Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Shaking Off Perfectionism

I've had a really rough time reclaiming my creativity lately, especially when it comes to painting. I look at different artist's sketchbooks on various social media and they all seem so perfect. Intellectually I know that it is unlikely that every page they have produced is perfection, but it's left me being too afraid to lay paintbrush to paper.
Filling some new pans with paint

But what could I do? You only get better by practicing and I am now afraid of practicing.
Empty Meeden watercolor tins

Eventually I realized that what I was most afraid of was not having any masterpieces to share. So I've taken a new approach.
Holbein, M. Graham, and Grumbacher tubes. Not shown is Daniel Smith. I'm most fond of M. Graham at the moment.

Even if I paint a masterpiece, I am not going to share any paintings online for a while.
Moleskine Art Plus sketchbook

I think it will be much healthier for me to reclaim painting as something I do for myself rather than something I do to earn accolades.
I got an adhesive magnet tape, cut it into little rectangles and adhered it to the bottom of the pans so they would magnetically stick to my tin.

In the meantime, I'd like to share some artists I greatly admire.
Missy Dunaway paints the most beautiful journal entries. Even she will tell you that she paints over some of her paintings repeatedly before she has something she likes.
Chandler O Leary has some awesome travel sketchbooks. She was kind enough to share what materials she uses. It helped me get a better idea of what I could use that would hold up to heavy use.
James Gurney regularly shares his plein air paintings. And still one better, he often releases videos showing how he did it.


Britney said...


I should get back to painting as well. thanks for sharing your mission to combat perfectionism-paralysis!

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