Discovering Your True Artistic Self

Each sheet of twelve studies, began the same way.  All started on a 22” x 30” sheet of Arches Oil Paper.   All were sectioned into 12 individual blank spaces, and all used a limited pallet.  They usually started with mark making, using Art Graf, stencils, oil bar and Cray Pas and ended with Cold Wax and oil paint. Play in the beginning was very important.   The play progressed into them telling me what they wanted to become.

Nicholas Wilton, a great artist and teacher, uses this approach to creating.  He will be having a free workshop, that you might be interested in. Here is the link to sign up   While introducing the workshop, he had three questions to ask you.  Below are the questions and how I answered.  I think they tie really well into my journey of discovering what I love and where I am going with this series.

 1.  What are the parts that you love about your work?             

         a.  Arches oil paper

         b.  Cold Wax medium how it creates texture and transparency

         c.  black lines (on again and off again, heavy and light, marks)

         d.  High intensity and high contrast

         e.  oil paint (how it glistens and mixes; mixing is sensual)

         f.   movement (I tend to always have movement and rhythm)

2.   What is the reason you are creating this way?

         a.  more freedom

         b.  playful

         c.  expressing with no limitations

         d.  experimental

         e.  sensual

         f.  learning to fearlessly be myself

         g. with Covid in the background, it fills a need, physically, spiritually and emotionally

3.  How will your art look in the future, perhaps 3 years from now?

          a.   By letting go of control, I believe I will have more growth in a shorter amount of time.

          b.  I probably will be painting large 36″ x 36″ or even larger

          c.  I can imagine my paintings being more visceral, fearless and raw

          d.  I will be disclosing more of my true self

Please try asking yourself these questions, they are quite revealing and might increase your growth in a real way.

The painting above is called “Another Tomorrow” 36” x 36” Cold wax oil, and mixed media on Arches oil paper is the third painting of my Twelve of Twelve series.  Again, because of our need to isolate and stay home due to Covid, it has made my art more colorful and passionate.  I notice my work is becoming less inhibited and sensual.

Thank you again for your time.  I appreciate you.




"Break The Plane" 12" x 12" acrylic on Ampersand  $360
"Break The Plane" 12" x 12" acrylic on Ampersand $360

 Creativity takes courage~Henri Matisse

I’m not necessarily having a block, but I have had some issues with my health and my family’s health that have gotten me off track. When you are forced to take a break, it is a good time to evaluate where you have been and where you are going. It might be a good time to be open to change as well. Things seem to be better now all the way around and reading books have been a great way for me to unblock my blocks, and get inspired. One of the books I recently read that has been very helpful is “Get Unstuck Creative Block Discover New Ideas”, produced by Danielle Krysa.

Inspired by her book and adding most of my own ideas, I created a list of ways to help you unblock your blocks.

  1. Find inspiration from old books and magazines.
  2. Use reference photos, combine and mix them
  3. Go to art museums
  4. Listen to music
  5. Take something you would throw away and recreate it
  6. Pick a day to fail completely.
  7. Clean your art studio.
  8. Use a medium you never used.
  9. Use a tool you would never use.
  10. Use a feather, a sponge, and a stick, to draw or create with.
  11. Take a break
  12. Take a walk
  13. Google it, Google it deeper. Go on a “Google Journey”.
  14. Pick out your favorite paintings and art on Pinterest.
  15. Take photos with your phone. I enjoy using Hipstamatic and love trying their different lenses and film.
  16. Create with restrictions; limited pallet, limited subject matter, size or scale.
  17. Visit galleries
  18. Break your own rules.
  19. Give your critic permission to take a vacation
  20. Daydream
  21. Teach
  22. Take a common everyday item and make it into something else.
  23. Make your art into a “verb” not a “noun”. In other words enjoy the process, don’t focus on the end solution.
  24. Read creative art blogs.
  25. Do something random
  26. Work fast
  27. Do something wrong
  28. Doodle
  29. Use the IPad for drawing.
  30. Use reference photos from Flickr (be sure to ask for permission if not for personal use.)
  31. Dance
  32. Go somewhere you have never been before.
  33. Stop thinking, just play
  34. Watch a TED talk
  35. Watch a Youtube video on a new medium, how to etc.
  36. Watch a movie
  37. Give yourself a deadline to go back to work
  38. Go on an artist date
  39. Have goals and commitments
  40. Pick a theme you are interested and create a show around it.
  41. Ask yourself better questions? “How can I?” Is usually a good start?
  42. Don’t worry about what people think.
  43. Be ready when inspiration calls.
  44. Go to the library
  45. Keep a binder of ideas for times when you are lacking inspiration
  46. Push through it
  47. Do what you fear the most
  48. Use a timer, commit to being in the studio for 10 minutes.
  49. Read “War Of Art” by Steven Pressfield
  50. Don't wait for inspiration just "WORK" 

I hoped you enjoyed these ideas.  Please feel free to add what your favorite ways are to get back into the studio to create.