Monday, November 7, 2011

Painting is really hard.

I've been struggling trying to learn how to paint for the last 16 months or so. It's really tough. I keep cranking out terrible painting after terrible painting. Each painting you see on the blog, each one that I feel good enough about that I don't mind people looking at, has about 15-20 failed studies behind it. In fact, I did four or five poor ones today. Doing the studies is how you develop the skills to become better. My drawings are very advanced because I have done thousands of drawings over the last 7 years to develop that skill. I've got stacks of drawings laying around the house. Stacks.

Beware anytime somebody say they've found a "secret". There's no secret. Or if there is a secret, the "secret" is "lots of work" combined with "conscious learning". You can't just work and you can't just learn, you've got to learn, then apply, then learn from what you just applied, and then apply again. Isn't that the definition of wisdom? Applied knowledge.

So remember, this stuff is hard. Lots of stuff in life is hard. Human nature is to take the easy way. Being an American tells us that life should be easy. Tell me one good thing that was easy, and worthwhile? Nothing. Everything worthwhile takes work. Everything worthwhile is hard. If your life is easy, or if the task you are working on is easy, you should step back and reevaluate yourself before you drift into meaninglessness.

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