A year ago, I had a little "bug" (I call it) in my head and it was buzzing around saying "paint, come on, just do it! Let's make something!" This voice would annoy and discourage me. I hadn't painted in years and when I used to paint, it would frustrate the hell out of me. The last thing I wanted to do was paint, work was occupying a good chunk of my energy and my personal life was having its own ups and downs. But as much as I did not want to paint, it was actually everything I needed at the time. I needed to make something. If you are creative, you know what I mean. You get this urge to let out your frustrations through art.
Although it has only been a year and I am not a master at my craft, or (now) business. I am however, a lot further than I was a year ago when I decided to paint, just for the fun of it. I did not expect anything or anyone to come from making art. I still feel this way and it still takes a lot out of me to paint. I still do not anticipate new friends or new income from art. But the new thing I have discovered (a year later) is that the art now returns every favor I lend. Every minute I take making art is rewarded through new faces, new confidence, new design, new inspiration, new failure, new focus, and new opportunity. I am beyond thankful for all of it.
Because it has been almost a year since I started Sacred Solutions, I've been reflecting a lot on how I got here and I have some mantras for beginners that I still follow as a self-taught artist...
Okay, there is really nothing you "can't do".
1. Art is an expensive hobby. But you can make it affordable.
If you're starting out, I suggest hitting up your local Goodwill or Ross before checking the prices of canvases at your local craft store. You can get a large, beautifully wrapped canvas for about a quarter of what you would spend at Michaels. From there, all you need is a good Gesso to use as a "base coat" on your painting. You can get a good sized tub of Artist's Loft Gesso at Michaels for about $20 - $40. Although that may sound pricy, it will for sure last through your money's worth. For acrylic paint, brands like Craft Smart are very inexpensive, and the quality is comparable to the higher priced acrylic paints where you get less for your money. When your piece is finished, you can get a spray a gloss finish to protect and enhance the colors of your painting. Brands like Krylon sell this product for about $10.
1. Get O U T of your "comfort zone" - It's actually more comfortable out here.
Art does not have any rules. Go into it, expecting nothing. You cannot fail from making art because as Leonardo Da Vinci put it, "Art is never finished, only abandoned" and its true! I mean, look at the old art you just copped from Goodwill that's about to get a makeover... lol.. moving on...
Art is a presentation and description of feeling, a projection of thought -and thoughts change. The thing I love about acrylic paint is that it dries so quickly that you can literally paint one night, hate it- and the next night paint something you love right on top of it. There is nothing to be afraid of, tune the doubt in your head off- and create anyway.
2. Be Consistent, Be Confident- And Be Both.
I stand by my rule, be consistent in your work- you will teach yourself this way. You will learn through your failures and find things that make your craft unique to YOU and YOUR WAY of creating. Social media is a powerful tool, use it wisely. From time to time I will look at old photos. About a year ago I posted the first paintings I ever made. I look at the art itself in "awe" because I have grown so much, my art is better now (you will always get "better"... especially from your own prospective) and although my work was at its absolute start, I was confident in it. Do not ever be ashamed of your work, display your journey and allow your art to grow with you.
& oh, will you inevitably grow...