Knowing when to change course in big or little ways is a big key to having a successful career as an artist and life as a person..
I guess this blogs taken a philosophical bent as of late and there are several reasons, the foremost being that I tend to be very philosophical about life and art and the other reason being that my art is changing a bit these days.
It's not the first time I've made changes. My whole life I've always been consistent. Consistent that is until the time was ripe for change.
|" Los Gatos Trail - Pond" by M Francis McCarthy|
What's changing in my painting?
I'm getting more into inserting imagination into my work. I've been striving to overtake photography's influence on my work for years.
Just recently I've started studying with Dennis Sheehan online. He is a very good painter and I've mentioned him on this blog as being a modern Tonalist that I admire.
While researching him for this blog I discovered that he offers a monthly subscription to his teaching videos and I have to say I'm getting a lot from his approach.
I started this blog to teach some of what I know but I'm also aware that I must always keep learning and adapting.
BTW, I'll post some of my recent painting here soon. Truth is they look much like my older paintings but whats changed is that they're looking like my best work instead of the ify ones that were stuck in a stasis of mediocrity.
I've been evaluating and repainting parts of many recent works that I had given up on. I'm using my imagination and applying other reference in some cases to good effect.
I'm pretty excited about whats going on in my studio these days and I owe a lot to Dennis for sharing some of his thirty years of painting knowledge.
If your facing similar challenges I recommend seeking out change in whatever form is appropriate for you, be it a blog like mine or a local teacher in your area or online.
A bit about today's painting; "Los Gatos Trail - Pond". This was done back in 2009. At the time I was teaching myself painting by photographing the ponds and creek behind where I worked in Campbell California and then painting them at my home studio.
I did about fifty or so paintings of the pond area. Working small I covered a lot of ground quickly as I learned to use my brush and paint.
I like the colors in this painting and it's got potential as a motif. I do think I too slavishly copied the photo reference. It's been a long process of learning how to get some good inspiration from a photo but also knowing what to leave out and add to make a great design.
It is very seldom that a natural scene will be a perfect composition with out some modification large or small. I'm going to be talking about this more in future posts.