Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A New Month and a New Challenge

The last time I tried to do a Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days Challenge, it was back in January, and I didn't quite make it. Ended up completing about half. I was disappointed in myself for not finishing the challenge, so when I saw another one for September, I decided to jump right in. And then, I started thinking: maybe I'm putting too much pressure on myself. Even working small, painting one piece a day is a lot of work. I've taken on other daily challenges: a photograph a day, a poem a day -- and failed miserably. I'm good for about a week, maybe two, and then I get distracted, or bored, and move on to something else. Maybe it's the long term commitment that scares me, although thirty days is hardly long term. I'm one of those folks who usually works better with a deadline. So why do I fail at these one-a-day challenges?  Beats me, but I have decided that, this time, I'm really going to do it.  YEAH!

BUT....there are some days when I should just stay out of the studio, and today was one of those days.  I decided to paint a seagull from a photo I took when I was back in New York.  Talk about trying to fit a square peg in a round hole! Or should I say, a rectangle in a square.  You'd think, with all my artistic experience, that space and placement wouldn't be a big deal for me any longer. Wrong!  I really am spatially challenged.  So there I was, trying to squeeze this oblong seagull into a perfect square.  I started over at least three times, and each time, ended up making the gull larger until I cut off its tail feathers and half of its beak. I considered giving up, which would place me one day behind already.  So I forged on, determined to complete Day Two of the Thirty Day Challenge because I'm not a quitter!  The result:  not one of my better pieces, but it's done.  And when I realized it wasn't going to fit on the square canvas, I decided to focus on color and lighting instead.  I was a little more successful with that.

So what have I learned?  Well, I'm still spatially challenged.  But, I completed the daily painting.  Two days down, 28 more to go. Stay tuned....

And here's Day One's painting:

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