Barb is a food writer, a travel writer, a recipe developer and an artist. But mainly she is my friend. Today she is a guest blogger. You can experience her “art journey” at http://yearofpainting.wordpress.com/ and her artful food blog at http://www.babfeasts.com/.
Here’s Barb …
Pat’s blog walks a line of creativity and spirituality without being religious…for me, at least. I don’t know if she means it to be that way, but that is what I find when I read it, and I love it. I think it is down to her lovely writing and her seeking a path. She shares that. I write a guest post today with that in mind.
I pick up a brush and stare. A blank white sheet of paper stares right back. The water is ready. I have more brushes than I could ever need, “art porn,” as my husband calls it. I have all the colors I could possibly need.
I have a lovely scene I front of me.
Sometimes I am hard-pressed to make the first stroke, the stroke that turns the blank page from paper to painting. It is a classic fear of failure. Something in me wants to turn out a masterpiece every time I sit down to paint.
I went to an opening for an art show put together by three acquaintances, and I nearly despaired when I saw their beautiful works and looked at the vast chasm between my paintings and their elegant efforts. A good friend reminded me that I have been at it for just more than one year. They have been at it for decades.
Am I failing?
I go home and pull out my own work. I am nearly 300 pieces In to a year of painting daily..or nearly, at any rate. When I got the idea, I just wanted to get better. I have blogged it every time I painted, with very few missed days.
As I go through them, I see an improvement in my drawing skills for sure. And the truth is. I set out to paint daily, and I have really done it almost every day. It is not a chore. It is a reward.
And if I am really, really honest? I have improved. I have miles–and decades–to go before I get to the level of those paintings that I saw in the gallery, but in the meantime, they inspire me. No need to despair.
A little skill, a lot of determination, plenty of practice and remaining open to learning what I don’t know (and, perhaps, learning it over and over and over again).
Bit of a metaphor for life.