Wakar's Art Blog

Two Steps Back

Posted on: February 26, 2012

Hmmmm. Just in case I was feeling too cocky after the workshop last weekend the classes this weekend were a disaster. At Wendy’s class we did our quick study warm up painting out side. It was beautiful. Alas, my painting turned out awful. I tried for simplified and minimal but it just ended up looking amateurish. (I don’t have a picture to upload as I left it at Wendy’s to dry.)  As for the painting I’d been working on in class for the last few weeks, I had lost all interest in it, no longer even liked it. So I didn’t even paint on that and ended up taking it home. As for the quick study,  I *may* try to salvage it as there are a couple of things that are less terrible. Still… 😦 Very disappointing.

Then the next day I went to the portrait and figure class and it was as if it was my first class all over again. I couldn’t get anything right. I thought I was remembering things Al had already shown and told me, but apparently not. (And, at least with his students, he is one patient man!) Now granted I’ve not practiced figure painting lately and it’s been a while since I had that class. Still… 😦 Just embarrassing.

So the hard hitting message for me was I need to spend more time practicing. I tried to use the excuse (to myself) than since I’m more of an expressionist that was why I couldn’t get the figures right, i.e. I’m just not that interested in realism. But, while I do want to paint in a more expressionist than realist way, I’m taking Wendy’s and Al’s classes because I want to develop my skill level. I know it will cut in on my ‘fun’ painting, but there’s no point in taking the classes if I’m not going to put in the brush mileage to learn the skills.

This morning I dug through the pages I’d ripped out of Vogue, Elle, VF and found some that looked like they would be good for figure practice as they had some good light and shadow. I did two this morning. On the second one, I was just fed up with trying to delineate values so I actually put some blue in for the background. In class I’ve been sticking to white and raw umber, mixing at least three mid values and then mixing those as needed. Today’s results? Well, better than in class! Which gives me a little encouragement at least. I would upload pics of them but I don’t know exactly where my camera is and I just don’t have the energy to fuss with it.

Instead I’ll just share and quick study from last Monday. Oil on 8×10 panel.

Off the Grid

On Friday I met with several other art buddies for a fun lunch and then a visit to Riskpress Gallery in Sebastopol where one of the group had several paintings showing. Good friends and good art go a long way toward making the weekend not a total loss. I can’t say the the paintings done today (so far) have salvaged the weekend re painting. Still… 🙂 It reminds me of something I read somewhere. This guy, whose job was an outside one, said that the worst day outdoors is still better than the best day indoors. Hmmm…. The worst day painting…



2 Responses to "Two Steps Back"

This reminds me so much of what I go through with music…ditto to having the worst day ever…quite humbling to say the least…but it seems your love and determination for your muse pulls you through…and of course, art friends to have coffee with and a good laugh mends the broken heart…onward and upward Wakar…I have not been practicing for a few months and the season rehearsal schedule starts…back to the woodshed for me too…love to hear your story…a needed salve for me!

As another art buddy reminded me, sometimes these seeming set backs or plateaus are just before a breakthrough to a new level. Here’s hoping! 🙂

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