I need some help, any tip is welcome! I used to love painting and drawing as a child, spending hours and hours in my own world. Unfortunately I neglected it when I became a teenager and gave it all up, untill recently. Now I am 40 and I decided to start again and I signed in for a classic art school, learning everything I always wanted to learn regarding technique and materials. But…I suffer from “artist block”’…Being a perfectionist I am just to affaid to mess up and therefor I just don’t bother to try at all. It has nothing to do with the art school itself, they are all nice and relaxed, it is just me. At home I have beautiful sets of materials and paper and I am just blocked entirely when only looking at my pensils or paint. So I end up in front of Netflix, feeling all bad and dissapointed about myself and the missed opportunities. Is there anyone here that has experience with the same thing? Any tips that might help me?
Matt’s last post is about getting artist block and it is true - we all go through it. I have plans to do a 24" x 40" painting. I find that when I am ‘satisfied’ with something I have done, I ‘sign it’ then never touch it again. I might do the same subject but not a true copy. Usually I don’t paint the same thing twice. I painted a picture of downtown Atlanta and my Mother wanted the same, so when I painted it, and it looked totally different. One looked like it was taken in the daylight, the second one looked like it was taken on a rainy night. You probably need to pick up a couple of pencils and do some ‘quick sketches’. That works for me. Good luck and hope you will shake the ‘artist block’.
Maybe try following along with getting sketchy, no pressure to complete a master peice in under an hour, just draw along and enjoy the activity.
Hi Miriam! Boy, can I ever relate to that! I find that I start with good intentions (I pick a subject, I prepare the material, I look at my reference forever and then… I find all kinds of excuses not to start. What I found helpful to get rid of my guilt is to simply accept the fact that I am not always ready to take the plunge. What do I do? I pick up a sketch book and I sketch parts of what I intend to do. For example, the frog in the attached photo. I sketched it loosely and was pleased with my overall result except for the head. So I picked the eye and sketched it several time until I saw where the initial sketch went wrong. I felt better after that.
I think that, as adults, we become too self conscious. We don’t want our art to look like a 5 year old did it so we do nothing. As children, we are not perfectionists, we are doers. Typically we don’t engage in a fun activity for the end result. We engage in it for the pleasure of doing it. As you said, we get lost in our own world, completely absorbed by the activity. So, we (yes you and I and many others like us) doodle, scribble, splash paint, color, just for the pleasure of getting lost in it. (Now, I only have to follow my own advice to get that frog done…
). I hope this helps.
Thank you all for your support! I am now drawing the Bee in color pencils and I love the picture of the frog, who knows It helps me to know that more of you are struggeling with the same thing, such a shame it takes away the joy we all once had in the past. I will continue with the Bee and the amazing lessons by Matt, pleaselet me know how you are all progressing!