When Your Painting Is A Dud

I have been listening to the Savvy Painter podcast on my 4 hour drives to see the littles. Have you heard of it? It is well worth your time. Host Antrese Wood skillfully interviews accomplished painters about how they got started painting, their views on painting and the artist’s life, and other really interesting topics.

One of the things that has stuck with me in listening to several of the podcasts is how many painters talk about the percentage of pieces that are good vs. the ones that just don’t work – the duds. I always thought once you achieved mastery level or had been painting for a certain amount of years that most of your paintings would work. Turns out, this is wrong and master painters have the same struggle that I have every day when I go into the studio, hoping and praying for a miracle on that canvas. In fact the percentage is as high as 30%-50% in the ones that don’t turn out.

This made me realize that my expectations for the work I am creating were too high and I have put a lot of pressure on myself to make every painting count, especially when I am getting ready for a show.

It has also helped me to see that I don’t have to show every painting. If I don’t love it, chances are others probably won’t either, and it is best kept for future evaluation or chalked up as a rung on the ladder of learning.

This makes me feel so much better, free-er (is that a word) and happy!

Let’s go paint, people!

Soli Deo Gloria