30 in 30 – the post-mortem

My favorite of the 30

Have I mentioned that I really enjoyed the 30 in 30?   I mean – I really enjoyed it.  I was waking up at 4 in the morning to post my picture of the day.   I was finding myself with a paintbrush in my hand at 6am ready to dash off a painting before going to work.    And I liked it!

My last set of meanderings on this was at the 15 day mark.  At that point it was still a novelty to have to get the brushes out every day.   The final 2 weeks flew by and I barely registered that I was painting every day.  It was just something I did like flossing or filling the dishwasher.  But more fun obviously.   These are some random thoughts about the whole thing.

This is stating the obvious but the more you paint the more efficient you become at all the little steps necessary.  Little steps that, when painting at more distant intervals,  are each a barrier to actually, you know,  painting.    Things like

   ‘Where is my artist’s tape?’
   ‘Oh damn – I have to rummage in the cupboard for a new tube of cerulean’
   ‘What kind of paper shall I use?’
   ‘How do I draw again?’
   ‘What size of paper shall I use?
   ‘Eeeek – how the hell do I start this painting?’

Keeping things simple – same paper,  same size,  keep the paint pans full,  keep your favorite drawing pencil handy – all these things help you actually get going on a painting.

This isn’t to say there was no thought involved in the painting.   Each painting fed into the next and I approached each one with a more carefully thought out plan than I usually do.   For instance I struggled with street scenes and the
first one

was bad.   I then went back and looked at some John Yardley paintings and tried to make some changes.   This actually made things

although at the time I was reasonably happy.    I reconsidered again and finally made some

.   This all happened over 2 or 3 days as opposed to the several months it would have taken previously. 

I have an extensive collection of painting DVD’s and I marvel at how someone like Alvaro Castagnet uses the brush like an extension of his arm.   By the very end (the last tiger painting) I was starting (starting note) to feel that way.

I didn’t get bored!  This was my greatest fear as my plan is to work less and paint more at some point in the future.  Only once did I rush to finish a painting (paint and brushes – blergh) and even then the painting was fine.

Time to experiment.   If it all goes wrong there’s only 24 hours before you’re doing a new one.

2 thoughts on “30 in 30 – the post-mortem

  1. This is just SO GREAT!!!! Like you, I do best if I paint first thing in the morning. And doesn't it make the day start happy? Already an accomplishment, maybe even before breakfast. And it's by far the best way to learn. I'm so pleased for you!

  2. Thank you. This is really encouraging. I am running my own creative business and raising 2 toddlers so it's hard to find time for painting. But, as you put it, finding time to paint every day is well worth the effort on the lung run. Thank you for continuing to inspire me and especially for your sincere thoughts.

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