So often I find with painting that it isn’t so much creating the picture that is hard, it is working through all the difficult stages that bring it from idea to realized art. What starts out as a certain idea in my mind changes (as it must) depending on what happens when I get everything on canvas. This is the challenge of art, and what also makes it fun and exciting. You build up layers in what you think will convey a certain look, and sometimes it involves moving forward, and sometimes you make a side trip, rubbing off a layer before building it in another direction.
I typically collage as I paint, and sometimes I cover much of the papers I use and sometimes I see things that stand out. I have to make changes based on what happens when it all gets added together on the canvas. There are lessons in those changes.
In my recent “Raise Her Voice” painting, it started with the background. I had an idea for the blues and greens I wanted, and created the blue eyeshadow and blue dress to go along with it.
I liked the yellows in there. And then I wanted more yellow. In fact, I wanted deeper yellow. While I appreciate, bright, whimsical colors, this painting felt different to me once I added my girl.
She’s a thinker. Much like me. She’s looking at the world and wondering if she has anything to say.
It may surprise you to know I do that a lot. I wonder about my purpose, about what I should say or do. I want to be the type of person God is proud of. I often fall short. We are all fallable. Sinners. I ask forgiveness from God for this, and ask for Him to keep me going. I want to do better, always.
One way I’ve done better is how and when I’ve chosen to speak out. I use to try and push back from abusive people, but my voice wasn’t strong. My dissention was shrill and unfocused. I tried to be like the people in the corporate world wanted, extroverted and gregarious.
But I’m a dork. An introvert thinker that ponders stuff a long time. When I speak out, I am more sure of my voice, althought it doesn’t come out as often. I feel it’s more authentic now.
I had never used that word on a painting before, but I added it now.
I added lace and hearts and flowers….
… all this influenced the painting. Once I got the beginnings started, that blue dress didn’t feel right. I added the yellows and greens that seemed to fit a bit more.
Painting provides so much more than a hobby. Working through the layers and changes helps you see your own resilience in life, too. You can keep on and see it through until the vision of your art appears before you, and you can do this with your life as well. We give up too soon, sometimes when instead we need to value our own individual voice.