Two years ago this month I started this blog. And I had no idea it would be such a hugely positive way for me to connect with others about my all consuming passion for art. You guys have been a huge support for me, encouraging me when I doubt myself, praising me when I don't deserve it, and just being downright awesome in every way. This artist's life can be very lonely, but you guys make it less so. Much less so. :)
So there will be a giveaway, as my way of saying thank you. :) But first, a look back at last year.
I set a goal for 2011 to grow more with my painting skills and when I look back at the work I've done over the last year I think that I really have grown. I've tried new mediums, new subjects, new points of view. I've let go of (at least some of) my fear of failure when it's time to sit down and paint. I've painted from my heart, subjects and compositions that matter to me, things that I wanted to paint. I've been true to myself.
And I think that is the greatest thing an artist can do.
So, with that in mind, I've compiled a list of paintings that I feel were milestones, paintings that really helped me stretch, or see things in a new way. And there's even a painting here that I've never posted before.
Here we go!
7" x 9" watercolor
Obviously this painting is a portrait of my son, so there's nothing new there :) but the thing about this painting that helped me grow was making those lost and found edges in his clothes, and maintaining his sweet face and eyes as the focus point. It's easy for me to paint everything I see in focus and be very literal about sharp edges since I love detail so much, but I think not having everything sharp makes a stronger impact, at least with this piece it did.
Still Life Interruptus 2
10" x 14" watercolor
With this painting I really pushed color and light, much more than what was seen in my reference photo, and much more than I usually do. Let me just tell you, it took guts for me to splash so much cadmium red all over his skin tones. I was a nervous wreck every time I sat there and watched the wet paint drying, asking myself "what have you done!" But in the end it was worth it. I really like the glow.
Next! No soup for you! (sorry but it had to be said)
7" x 9" watercolor
This painting helped me see what a big difference having a well thought out color scheme can make in your finished work. I like the color harmony here. I think that I only used about five tube colors to create this painting. Wierd since I'm a color junkie and usually use everything on my palette! And I really like the variety of edges here too.
6" x 6" watercolor
This was the first still life I ever painted. And painting this proved to me that you don't always need a face or figure to tell a story or have some drama. Go figure! ;)
And really I could talk about what I learned from every single painting I did last year, but that would be boring so here's one more. . .
8" x 10" acrylic on masonite
This is the one I never posted, but painted back in June of last year. Working with acrylics is an interesting experience for me. I feel like I'm completely out of my comfort zone and I'm always interested to see that how I paint with acrylics is entirely different from how I paint with watercolors, or even colored pencils. It's like I have a different personality that only shows up when I paint with acrylics. I think I'll call her Genevive. (that's for you Brodie ;)
But I digress, the growth that comes from painting with acrylics shows up in my watercolors too I think. I feel more daring, more brave, less afraid to fail when I approach my next watercolor. It's very. . . liberating I guess you could say.
Now onto the giveaway. :)
As my way of saying thank you for being the rock stars that you are all you need to do is leave a comment on this post (or on the corresponding link to this blog post on my facebook page). In your comment you don't need to tell me how awesome you think I am (although that would be cool. Kidding. . . kinda :), you can tell me something awesome about you, like what your favorite cupcake flavor is, or your future plans for world domination (Mwa ha ha!!!).
I'm not requiring you guys to do anything extra for this giveaway, just comment and you're entered. But. . . if you want to share it with others through facebook, or your own blog, or some other way, then that would just be awesome and I would be your best friend forever (I'm sorry I just can NOT bring myself to write BFF), but you don't have to. :)
Then next Monday night I will randomly choose one person who will win a 5" x 7" print of my painting Timeless Remedy:
and on Tuesday I will post who that winner is. :)
Thanks everybody. It's been an amazing two years. Here's to a great new year! Huzzah for 2012!!!