I’ve always stayed incredibly busy, and whenever there is space, I manage to fill that void with more activity and projects. Last month’s daily painting in October was a good example of biting off a bit more than I could chew, but gosh darn it, I am gonna do it.
The result of painting daily was a time of growth in the skill of painting and seeing. I challenged myself to do a portrait of a child, something I swore I would not do. I painted a pet portrait, in plein air, still lifes of everyday items, painted landscapes from screenshots of video someone sent me, from imagination, and even some nontraditional technique and materials, such as splashy gold paint. I was immensely rewarded with encouragement from my facebook and real life friends. I produced 3 larger paintings for an art show. I raised about $1000 by giving away my small paintings for donations to three causes I support. I gained more followers, and I put myself out there with a sign that says, “I want to be an artist.” So #PaintingOctober project was huge to say the least.
But to be honest, there were costs, such as lack of sleep. More than a few times, I was finishing those paintings past midnight. I never updated the etsy shop and tried to sell anything. I completely neglected this blog, which had a good start but has many hiccups to iron out. My kids went to bed saying good night to a preoccupied mother who was intently focussed over some canvas. I gained a couple pounds from sedentary activity. Eh.
So for a season, we all buckle down to do something big, but we may not (at least I can’t) sustain that as a new lifestyle. But for now, I am enjoying a bit of break, getting some other priorities accomplished, allowing myself permission to paint on a less rigorous schedule. Make the main thing the main thing, right? And with Christmas around the corner, there is no time better than now to be focussed on the priorities.
Here is one of three paintings I submitted for the Oregon Society of Artists 200 for under $200 shows this weekend. It was painted from photo reference taken when I participated in a walk to benefit our Oregon Health Sciences University department of Institute on Development and Disability. It was a beautiful October morning walking around the riverfront of downtown Portland Oregon. The painting is 12 x 12 inches acrylic on cradled birch panel board with wood stained sides. The actual painting will be on display 2185 SW Park Pl, Portland, OR 97205 from now until Dec. 1, 2016 along with two other paintings of mine. It is currently for sale for $200, smaller prints available at the RightBrainy.etsy.com shop soon.