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Showing posts from March, 2016

Combat Fear With Rituals!

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I bet that title caught your attention! Artists should know that the white canvas - or paper - or board - represents many things. Speaking personally, it's my ambition - my ideas - my passion - my needs - my goals - my memories - my body/mind - and yes, my fears.

We view fear as a negative. How? Ever use any of these comments on yourself?
 - My work is no good.
 - No one will like this!
 - I'll never get better...
 - It's just mediocre.
 - It will never sell.
 - It's all been done before....

How do rituals combat our fears? Story > As a child I always had to have a drink of water before bed. My ritual was...drink at the kitchen sink, then I had to be in bed by the count of 10 or the black leopard would get me! I could make it on 3 but would drag out the count til on 10 I was pulling the cover over my head! Safe! This ritual warded off all the fears of the night.

Rituals Today? Wash dishes at the sink by hand. Organize the closet. Clear the clutter from my desk!
How do …

Establish Rituals

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Rituals....we all have them even if we are not aware! As I mentioned in a previous blog, my day begins with a ritual. Hot tea or coffee...most likely coffee. Then it's out to feed the cat and sit on my studio porch watching the sun sparkle thru the hanging moss. Next the studio. Even on days when I can't stay long enough to paint, the studio welcomes. In the evenings, I light a candle. It's the ritual that ends the day with a warm glow and enticing aroma. But what about "creative rituals"?

Music for some becomes a ritual. Someone told me recently that Bach gets them in the mood for painting. I usually begin the studio day with music but after awhile, silence is more conducive to creating.

Sit down and contemplate the days work to be done....make a ritual. The studio should not be a place to fear, but a place where you want to spend your time. What works for one artist isn't ideal for all. You have to personalize your rituals.

When I sit on the porch in the morni…

Habit or Routine?

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Instead of the discipline of painting, I call it the "habit" of painting. So how do you get into the habit?

1.  Set goals.
2.  Get up and Show up!
3.  Artwork is work! (my bumper sticker)
4.  Routine! Let it become habit!

Some think that creativity is about imagination, a gift that only some receive. Routine can be seen as boring repetition...but it's actually skill building. It takes skill to bring to life those things that you imagine. We are not born with skill. That comes with study, practice, repetition.

Respect your abilities. Use them wisely and allow yourself the routine of creating.


River Flow is a painting from a scene that I return to "routinely". It never fells to inspire! Oil on 16 x 40 canvas