Monday, January 13, 2014

Turtle ~ Symbol of Patience and Persistence

"Turtle tells us that you can't go
through life quitting everything. 
If you're going to achieve anything,
you've got to stick with something."

Turtle Spirit ~ Enjoy the Journey
Day 13

~Longevity  ~  Immortality  ~  Steadfastness~

8.5 x 6.5" Hand Painted Watercolor on Yupo 
Matted and Framed to 10" x 8"

Painting Options

Friday night I was just about to scrap my Spirit Guide theme, compositional idea and style for the 30/30 challenge, because it is not turning out as I had envisioned. Of course, most of my paintings never do. I've got a very strong willed muse who always seems to take over when I'm engrossed in that right-brain creative mode. It's as if I'm in a dream state where I'm just watching as the story unfolds.

After I posted on facebook Saturday morning about the meltdown, my super supportive online friends got me back on track! Today I commented on the blog of a new artist friend who's struggling with the challenge and I was reminded of this advice from one of my college professors; " Accept the fact that you will never be completely happy with your work because your knowledge will always be greater than your skill".

One of the most rewarding parts of this 30 in 30 challenge is meeting new friends online and giving support and feedback to each other. I will be happy if I can give back a small percentage of the good advice and camaraderie that I have received so far.

I have been on this art business journey for over 30 years. Yes, it's a little mind blowing, but I have painted thousands of pictures. This blog will feature some of the things I've learned along the way over the next few days.

I thought I was really well prepared for this challenge; it being my third one in a 13 month period. I did 36 thumbnail sketches and have numbered the ones I've used (in one variation or another) so far. A rocky start produced six or seven paintings the first two days, none of which I liked.

What I'm doing is definitely not new, having self-published a book on Animal Spirits in 2005. I am looking to revisit the subject in a new way though. I'd like to offer cards (notecards and a deck or sets - which could be collected or matted / framed). Each card would feature one guide and a few words of significance. I would like to expand it beyond animals too. I could encompass other nature spirits (wind, moon, flowers, etc.) and possibly some mythological ones (angels, unicorns, dragons). My idea is to unify the set through format (vertical), color (which isn't happening), style (loose - which isn't happening), motif (swirls), angle (side view), distance (close-up) with focus on the eye and of course, to improve my technique (Transparent Watercolor - using a few opaque colors on Yupo paper).  Obviously, it's an ongoing project, even after the challenge is done. After hours of work on Friday, I felt that the cat painting was overworked, but it turned out to be everyone's favorite, so maybe I just need to be more flexible in what I'm looking for. 

I don't know, what do you think? I'd love to get more feedback. Here's  a collage of my paintings so far, minus day 1 which I need to re-do. (So I am still behind.) If I do stick with this theme, what Spirit Guides would you like me to include?

 Thanks so much for being here and for your comments.

I really and truly can't thank you enough
for your support and friendship.

Have a good night! 

X ♥  O

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