Watercolor – Nested

watercolor of a window and rumpled bed
Nested 11 x 17 Watercolor on paper

Nourish your Creative Self

Advice for Life

Thank goodness brilliant minds take time to document ideas, creations and formulas. Especially these days, with storm clouds all around. Where would we be without the written word, or art supplies? You and I have the option to pour over the masterful conclusions scribbled and painted by smart people who lived centuries before us. Populations have previously wrung their hands, knit their brows and scribbled solutions toward figuring things out. We probably don’t need to sit in a foggy slump, stained by events we can’t control, or stuck on a problem. Let’s try taking a deep breath, while we wrap our focus around a compass leaning towards making art. Use that keyboard to access libraries of documented workarounds in every arena of artistic life. Make something. Fill your rooms with music, and art-making. Search for good things, and share them.

Here are some nuggets of wisdom from the author Kurt Vonnegut. Brew some tea and have a read.

“There’s only one rule that I know of, babies – God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.”         ~Kurt Vonnegut

watercolor painting in process
In the studio.

We All Need Art, Now

This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. [We paint.] That is how civilizations heal. ~ Toni Morrison

You can take all the engineering and computer classes you want, but I can tell you that what consistently helps us understand what it means to be human, and offers us spaces where we can contemplate the improvement of that condition, has always been the humanities and the arts. And so therefore it’s absolutely essential.

The whole culture is telling you to hurry, while the art tells you to take your time. Listen to the art.  ~Junot Diaz

Everyone discusses my art and pretends to understand – as if it were necessary to understand – when it is simply necessary to love.  ~Claude Monet

By doing what you love you inspire and awaken the hearts of others.  ~Satsuki Shibayu

I’ve been absolutely terrified every moment of my life and I’ve never let it keep me from doing a single thing that I wanted to do.   ~Georgia O’keefe

Who Owns that?

In the last post, I encouraged working from family photos, and digging deep for inspiration in your own memories. When you’re inspired to create based on personal interactions with others, and you use another person’s name, likeness or references that make friends and family recognizable in the work, who owns the result of your documented efforts? Here is an examination of that question by Liana Finck, in a storyboard pictorial for your pondering pleasure.

Got Ten Minutes?

One of the most frequent comments I hear at art exhibits is about Time. Folks attending art festivals and exhibitions frequently muse about a longing to be more creative – to get back to drawing and painting – but they just don’t have the time. Larry Kim lists nine creativity-boosting ideas that take ten minutes each in this brief article.

Sketching is a great way to preserve memories and make constructive use of time that might otherwise be spent fiddling on a phone. Buy a small, lightweight sketchbook that can easily fit in your bag.  ~Larry Kim

small pencil portraits
Pencil sketch beginnings

Big News

Did I tell you I’ve joined Patreon to create a subscription option for anyone who wants to wave pompoms of support in my direction?  Patreon is a membership platform for artists to build relationships with supporters, or “patrons.” My hope is that any subscriptions through Patreon will procure quality audio and video equipment, as well as editing software, lighting, and hard drive storage so I can shoot, edit and share better art experiments, blog posts and tutorial videos. You lovely folks have been suggesting this for a few years now, so I listened, and here it is.

If you’re not familiar with Patreon, watch this video:

If you have any questions about how Patreon works, don’t be afraid to be in touch.

Spread the Love

Do you already support artists, writers, musicians and creatives on Patreon? Is there anyone we should know about and consider supporting too? (One of the creatives I support on Patreon is Bob from I Like to Make Stuff, and it’s pretty cool to be contributing to another maker’s mission.) Please leave a link in the comments, and introduce us to the folks you’re encouraging on their creative journey.

Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll see you in the next post –


P.S. You can subscribe to get these posts via email as soon as they’re published. It’s free. Sign up here.

Art Quote

In today’s world, if you don’t take your time, it will be taken from you. Most people exert less control over how they use their time than they should. Take back control. The fact is, most people give away great gobs of their time and attention every day without meaning to and usually without being aware that they are. They surrender their attention to the onslaught of modern life without putting up much of a fight, as if they were overmatched. No one would dump $150 into the garbage every day, but most of us flush at least a 150 minutes every day without even noticing we’re doing it.

~Edward Hallowell

which watercolor paper should I buy?
Click the rinse water for your free downloadable three-page primer all about watercolor paper.

Write something.... pretend we're neighbors, and we’re painting watercolors together in the garden....