Challenges and chances to win a seat in Ever After

Life isn’t without its challenges. Neither is art. Every day when I wake up, the first thought that enters my mind is “what will I do today?” This is such a broad question but for me it is directly related to my creativity. If, I’m not creating, then I feel lost, as if I have been disconnected from my anchor.

When I don’t know what to do, I generally fall back on classes I have available for me to learn from or work along with an amazing artist. One of those artists is Tamara Laporte. She has many classes I want to take, including her upcoming class of Ever After.

The desire to take her classes isn’t just for what I will learn in art and art techniques. The main reason is because of her personality. She radiates love. Her laughter is contagious. I find her hands beautiful and an inspiration to me that no matter my circumstances I will always be able to be creative.

Tamara Laporte is having a give-away for her Ever After course. You can read about the course here. They are conducting a blog hop with the various teachers participating in Ever After and each teacher is giving away a seat in the class. I write about this because I want everyone who reads this to have a chance at winning a seat.

I was introduced to Tamara’s work after researching online art courses. She has a free art course “Art, Heart and Healing” which you can find here at the bottom of her page. I am all about learning all I can about the way a teacher instructs before buying any of their paid classes. Most instructors give just a mini course which at times can be misleading as to how good a teacher they are, so I was impressed that “Art, Heart and Healing” is a free 4 week class. It is larger than Tam’s mini classes and a full blown class on its own with lots of content.

I am not a whimsical type artist, or I didn’t think I was. I’m not so sure now. The point I’m making is when I started taking “Art, Heart and Healing” it was when I was trying to find my way back into being able to do art like I had in my high school art classes. For some reason starting in grade 8, Mr. McFarland, awakened something in me I never knew I had. Having him as my art teacher until I graduated high school was the best thing that ever happened to me and I believed I was an artist. After high school, it was difficult to make that connection and I doubted myself as an artist.

Even though Tamara Laporte’s style isn’t really my style, the whimsical nature of her work drew me in. It didn’t have to be perfect. Everything didn’t have to be anatomically correct. I always attempted realism and my inability to create anything even close to realism was what my inner critic had a field day with. Doing Tam’s classes and hearing her say it doesn’t have to be perfect, in fact, get messy, accept what you think are mistakes, helped me respond to my inner critic in a way that helped me continue and create imperfect pieces of art. In fact, watching her make her own mistakes and how she worked with them, helped free me from my perfectionist.

I credit Tam and a few other artists, like Christy Sobolewski, and Effy Wild, for helping me re-awaken my inner artist and believe in her again, but I will never forget Mr. McFarland’s influence. This is an important journey for me and is why I created this blog to write about it.

I often face challenges when I try new mediums, or when I attempt to draw a face or an animal. I often have to let go of my perfectionist, and my natural proclivity towards details. The best advice I ever heard was when beginning a drawing, forget about the details. Start with a loose sketch, drawing just the shapes making adjustments to get them sorted out where you want them to be. Then you can begin to build upon the details.

My eye for detail generally has me immediately diving in deep. I might decide to draw a whole face but as soon as I put pencil to paper, I’m suddenly drawing just one eye in all its fine details, then the next thing I know I find out it is in the wrong position on the page. I do have to consciously put aside my attention to detail when I first begin a sketch. I have learned, if I don’t, then frustration and angst will eventually follow.

This piece of advice came from this youtube video.

I’ve learned a lot over this past year. I would have to say, the most important thing I’ve learned is how to face challenges. There have been many. Thanks to teachers like Tam, Christy and Effy, the challenges within my art, my creativity, aren’t so impossible to overcome anymore.

I hope you will check out Tam’s new class Ever After. I know I have not been disappointed in any of her classes and generally feel her content far exceeds the price of admission.

I am currently working on two drawings which I plan on painting. I haven’t decided on what medium I’ll use yet. Both are on watercolor paper which means I can use any medium I have.  I am leaning towards watercolor and augmenting it with a bit of acrylic paint, especially for highlights.

This first image is from Pull, Pen, Paint a course provided by Kiala Givehand. Thisi s my beginning sketch for Effy Wild’s course in week 4, titled “Mirrors of the Soul”. It is an inspired art journal page using our Soul card as inspiration. My soul card happens to also be my personality card, The Chariot. This is still a work in progress.

PPP Chariot inspired art copy

This second image is a drawing I created in mid-March. It is also a work in progress. I’m still making decisions on what else needs to be included in the sketch, and I have the challenge of how to do the background and retain the image of the mandala. Then how to bring that image forward. I will most likely go over everything in permanent ink before adding any paint. I love these ladies. I’m not sure where they came from but I am connected to them.

women of the universe unite copy

Being an artist is also physically challenging. I wasn’t prepared for the abuse our bodies can experience while creating art.  Pain has become a constant in my life except during some moments when I am creating art. I am fascinated by this.

~Patti

 

Watercolor with a tad bit of Acrylic…

I surprise myself sometimes. This is one of those times. The below painting is from the Pull, Pen, Paint course I’m taking online. This is the first time I attempted a portrait using watercolor. In different art lessons I have taken, almost all of the instructors state to not give up when your painting looks like a mess. It is hard to believe them when they say, if it is a mess then you are doing something right, because if you keep going the results will be amazing. I have to admit, there were several times, I had some “Ah, shit” moments and my inner critic would tell me “It will never turn out the way you want it to.” Well, my inner critic was right. It turned out better than I had planned.

I started with a pencil sketch. Then started in with watercolor, wet on dry for the face. I didn’t have flesh tone in my watercolors, so I had to mix my colors. The first brush stroke I put down had an immediate response of, “Oh shit, that’s too dark.” I continued though, using techniques I saw other painters do, like taking a slightly wet brush without any paint on it to blend and push the darker color where I wanted it to go.

I can’t describe every part of what I did because I really don’t remember everything. I know I pushed the paint around, even got some pilling of the paper but only slightly and I would back off a bit when that would happen. The face was all wet on dry or mostly dry, because it does become damp from the paint I’m applying but I never made it sloppy wet. I left that for the hair, the background and the blouse.

The hair was done next, once I had the face mostly to where I wanted it. I always have trouble finalizing the face until I have the hair in. The hair changes everything about the face. What once looked dark, becomes lighter. I put down yellow, and added water to spread it around more, added brown to get some texture and shading. Then I went to the background and the shirt.

The background and the shirt were wet on wet. Red down first on the shirt. Then black for the background. I blotted some of the excess water up which gave the background a nice texture. Then I layered slightly watered down acrylic gold metallic, not just on the black background but also over the hair and the blouse.

This is where it gets fuzzy as to what all I did. I returned to the face and added some details in black watercolor, and brown for the eyes, and added some blue to the skin tone to get some a blueish grey color for shading. I needed deeper shading, and less pinkish/brown. Then I added the black around the eyes and eyelashes, and other details around the face. I was pretty happy with it but needed some highlights.

I went to acrylic vanilla to blend in and push back the shading on her face. Then white acrylic for some brighter highlights. I added black and white acrylic to the hair which really brought the colors out and added dimension.

Pull, Pen, Paint is a course about using Tarot to inspire our art. I took three things from my Tarot drawing. A color pallet of gold, black and red. A feeling of being kind and gentle with myself. An inner desire to create a woman which embodied the essence of the Tarot reading.

During the painting, a storm blew in. Thunder sounded, and rain poured down, and the rather warm day turned into a cool cleansing.  As I write this, I look out my window. The rain still comes down but not in the hard downpour of earlier. Classical music has been playing all day while I worked. I’m happy with what I’ve created.

I have another page with another sketch waiting for paint to be applied. It is an idea I have for Journal52’s prompt Emerge. I’m excited to get started but need to finalize this one, and sign it.

Oh, I discovered a few days ago, I can’t do a web store on WordPress from a free WordPress account, so if I want to sell any of my work, I’ll have to purchase web hosting that will allow for a web store. I’m not sure what I’ll do about that right now.

~Patti

 

HeavenandEarthPainting