Week 23 - Painting with your Head and your Heart
Your worst battle is between what you know and what you feel.
What is the breakthrough point for an Artist? I guess it's different for everyone, but for me, it wasn't winning the battle between heart and head, but building an accord between the two.
Picasso is quoted as saying, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. It took me four years to paint like Rembrandt, but a lifetime to paint like a child.”
Unlearning is hard.
When we use our head to paint, it's cognitive thinking. We paint what we know. This is great when dealing with values, and perspectives, but can fall short when painting beyond what we know, to painting what we feel. That's where the heart comes in.
Painting strictly with your heart as an adult is hard. The confidence we had as a child has been diminished from just living and learning.
I'm not saying knowledge is a bad thing, but too much may undermine creativity. Overthinking your work could lead to creative paralysis, or artist block.
I'm constantly experimenting within my painting process, trying something different, exploring new ways to express myself. It's new territory, and in so, I can tap into my heart more than my head.
So, let go, give up control. Let things happen. Go with your gut, and your heart, while still being mindful to the wisdom you have gained through experience.
What's in the Studio
I'm having fun painting with knives over the past few weeks. This week, I decided to combine brush work with knife work.
I started "The Poetry of Clouds" with a 2" soft acrylic brush and Golden High Flow Acrylic paints. I quickly blocked in colour and value over an orange background.
Switching to palette knives and Golden Heavy Body Acrylic paint, I overpainted the underpainting adding additional layers of depth with colour and tones within the same colour palette.
The final layer was thin "veils" of colour to tone out some of the lighter areas in the clouds, and to help harmonise and level out the values of overall sky area.
Until next week.