Stop And Smell The Flowers

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Everyday Growing Artist

The problem with being an artist trying to grow her business is TIME.  There never seems to be enough time in a day to do what I want to do.  It seems like no matter how much I try to set aside the time something always comes up and steals it away.

I work full-time in addition to my art career and that takes up my weekdays 8-5PM.  When I get home from work I must cook dinner (unless my wonderful husband has done it for me, which he frequently does), spend time with Mom, the kids and my husband.  Whatever time is left is mine to spend doing my own thing. 

Sometimes Mom requires more time than other days though.  She is 81 years old now and needs care and attention.  I may not have her for long, so I sacrifice the time.  The kids, well they are teenagers and are usually doing their own thing but my youngest, still need time and attention and I want to be there for him no matter what.  My husband is a rock.  He is so supportive and loving and is always willing to help me carve out my time.  In exchange I let him watch football. ;-)  All kidding aside, he gets me and understands that I NEED this time and never complains. 

By the time my free time does come up, many days I am just too tired to be creative and all I can do is use the time to network a bit on Facebook or plan my next project.

I look at all wonderful artists online that paint every single day and I wonder how on earth they do it.  I wonder if they work at a job besides their art, and how they schedule their time.  I must admit I am a bit envious of their time and all the beautiful art they create. But this is my life and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

My time spent painting is usually productive and thankfully I paint pretty fast.  I can usually complete a painting in 1 to 2 days, depending on the size and the detail of the piece.  While it isn’t near enough time, I try to make every day count in some way artistically.  Whether I am pouring over all the wonderful art work on Facebook or reading an Art Book, I try to make art a part of every day.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Boomer 2

Boomer and I are getting to be good friends.  I set out this weekend to complete the second commission piece of Boomer for a friend. The first portrait of Boomer was a practice run for the Portrait I completed today. Boomer 2 is on a smaller scale but the same size canvas 16 x 20. It will eventually be framed in the back of a chair. See previous post for photo of chair.

The smaller scale portrait was more of a challenge. Everything was smaller so I had to break out the detail brushes. I also was more organized when mixing my colors, careful to record the color mixes, and to mix ample color for the entire portrait.  I recommend this practice because there is nothing more frustrating than not having enough paint to finish your painting and having to remix color but not being able to remember what colors you used for the perfect match.   Painful lessons learned. Also for a commissioned piece I thought it would be be wise to document my color palette in case I ever have to touch up, repair or paint another painting. 

Another difference in this painting was the addition of a mane. The reference photo for the pose didn't show the mane so I had to use alternate references to paint the mane. The coloring was a bit different in each reference because of the lighting changes and I originally painted the mane a bit too light. The owner pointed it out after seeing the progress photo so I adjusted the color. Thank goodness for technology and the convenience of sending photos in a text. Without it I would have had to make the adjustment in a later stage or after delivery. 

Another change that was made was done after I posted the finished painting to a Facebook group called Painting Friends. A group member pointed out that the horses head looked as if it were mounted and that this was less appealing.  She suggested I add some shadowing to the right to give the suggestion of the horses body. I get where she was going and after looking at it I agree. In this case it isn't going to make a difference because the painting will be framed in a smaller frame but for my own peace of mind I added a bit of shadowing.  Not much but it's better. 

Many lessons learned this go around. But the client is happy and that makes me happy.