The last day of the plein air competition, at Shelby's, I drew a bouquet of blowsy roses, and yesterday, in between baking, setting up for a bbq, and watching the Star Trek marathon on SciFi, I kept dabbing away at it, adding a wash then putting it aside; adding another ... This is not my usual method--which is a kind of mad rush--and I wondered why I was being so circumspect. Not that it's a bad idea for me to be more deliberate, but I was feeling stymied, uncertain.
Then I realized that the reason I've been painting so little and struggling so much is that somewhere along the way lately I have gone back to being too attached to results.
Everyone has goals when they paint, and, from the beginning, one of mine was, and has been, to privilege the process, not the outcome. Putting the paint on the paper, seeing what it will do, that excitement of discovery IS the point, not the painting that results: or at least that's the state of mind I strive for.
Blogging--making paintings to put out there and seeing other people's paintings and processes has been a tremendous help in getting there. And now two of my best friends have been delving into watercolor and their enjoyment and experimentation has made me realize what I am currently lacking.
So it's back to square one, if I can get there!