Shake it Loose

Being a person who works best under pressure, I love having something to work toward.  Well, now I am under the gun to paint, paint, paint as I get ready for an  upcoming solo show this October.

COLOR…OUTSIDE THE LINES is the title for the show and that’s exactly what I do.  I am crazy for color and I enjoy working fast and loose, but sometimes that’s not the easiest thing to do when I’m under pressure.

We all do it. There’s a deadline approaching and things have to get done. No matter what, the clock is ticking and we have to perform.  Regardless what the task is, it’s hard to stay cool and just get ready.  

If I am painting outdoors (en plein air) , it seems easier to stay loose. The birds tweet, the bugs buzz and the light changes constantly so I have to work fast and free. And  all of the elements keep me distracted. But, put me in the studio, on a hot summer day and I tend to get caught up in the details.

So, how to “shake it loose” in the studio this summer? Many artists play music while they do their art. This works for me too, sometimes. But the thing I find most helpful is to listen to a good audio book. Yes, that works wonders for me. The book, or sometimes a podcast, seems to occupy the left part of my brain. That’s the part that says “be neat, don’t mess up, get it right, think about it.” That’s the part of my brain that needs to concentrate on something else so that the creativity can flow.

Now, this might not be scientific, but I find that if I have done my preliminary sketches, thought through my color scheme and mentally planned for the painting, I can step up to that easel, turn on the audio book and things just seem to flow with the paintbrush or pastels.

So, as I listen to some great tales over the summer, I will be busily painting for the show. Hmmmm….I wonder if all that drama is reflected in the paintings.  I sure hope so!  STAY COOL, FRIENDS.