One of the things that I think keeps people from becoming artists is that we let structure dictate what we learn first, second, and third as opposed to letting interest dictate what we learn first second and third. And as a pretty structured person myself, I understand this approach. It makes sense to use this approach in classes and art school. But if I had tried to learn to draw in the strictest sense before I could move on, I would have never moved on because I would have quit. Drawing for the longest time, held no interest for me because while I understood theoretically why it was important, I didn’t understand it practically and emotionally for me and my art. It was the difference between knowing I should do something but wanting to do it exactly zero.
But now that has changed. I understand that my limits begin where that set of knowledge begins. And that makes it suddenly really exciting to work on drawing, value and color because I understand exactly how they will strengthen my work. And now I’m ready to approach them.
I’ve painted very little since March. I’ve been using my time to focus on a creative project that ends this Sunday, but I’ve realized that I really do need something like painting a day to keep me going back into my studio. I’ve also realized, in direct opposition to painting a day, that the painting a day doesn’t give me time to really think about the next steps to push my work or to focus on basic art skills, which I’m now realizing I really want to focus on. So for the rest of April and all of May, I am creating a new challenge for myself. I am challenging myself to paint a simple value study each and every day. I will use three or five values of marker and then three to five of pre-mixed paint. If I have time or interest, I will then collage and paint on top of those values, making sure that the paint I’m using keeps in line with those colors.
Rules (some similar to my first painting-a-day rules:
1. Paintings don’t have to be fantastic.
2. Has to be posted to the blog for it to count.
3. Take one painting a week and add color and collage over it making sure that stays with the same value families.
I will start all of this on Monday May 14th.
What are your daily-painting challenges? How have you approached studying value?