watercolor work in progress 5 x 7
Why a mountain lion? Because they're beautiful. That's one reason :) I was very drawn to this image. I love the sunlight hitting her shoulders and back, how it turns her fur a golden-red color. I love how she's completely focused on whatever it is she's looking at.
This happens to be a captive mountain lion, and I was honestly surprised by the affection she showed her human handler. It was pretty cool. Here we have an example of another sometimes-cuddle-beast.
And I've just always really loved mountain lions, they remind me of a cat I had when I was a kid, who was definitely a cuddle beast.
Now on to Motivational Monday :) I have three things to say about that today.
I've been painting a lot lately, making sure that I've got plenty of paintings lined up and ready for me to start. Because I've found that a lot of the time I'll get stuck when I finish a painting and then have nothing else to work on right away.
So right now I'm sometimes working on two or three paintings at a time, switching back and forth. This is something I haven't done a whole lot of in the past, because it would just throw me off my groove. But now that I have less and less time to devote to painting, I'm finding that I'm making the most out of whatever time I do have.
So that's tip number one, make sure you have something ready to work on when you've finished your current piece. Keep that momentum going.
Something else that I'm going to start doing this week is to take three of my favorite living artists and study their work. What are they doing that I could incorporate into my style of working? Composition, value, color, mood, things like that. I think it's important to keep learning, studying and practicing, and I haven't spent very much time doing that lately. So this week I'm going to try and pick that back up.
The artists I've chosen are Ali Cavanaugh, Steve Hanks, and Susan Harrison-Tustain. Three master watercolorists with an emphasis on portraiture and figure work. The point of this study is not to copy their work, but to learn from it, to pick their paintings apart and figure out what makes them successful and then take those principles and apply it to my work.
Tip number two is, find an artist that inspires you and try to figure out why they do and what you can learn from them.
And finally, this weekend I realized something. Other people don't think about you and your work the same way you do. Shocking revelation right? Yes, well, what I mean is that if you're feeling discouraged about your work just remember that it's probably not as bad as you think it is. Actually, I'm positive that it's not. Someone out there most likely loves what you do and really admires your talent and hard work.
Yes, they really do. I'm serious. Not even kidding. So feel good about what you do, whatever stage you're at in your art career. No one else can paint like you :)
Tip number three is, you are an awesome artist. Now don't let that go to your head, but feel good about your talent and effort. It's okay. You can. I just told you that you could :)
So, what's motivating you lately?