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restraint

June 21, 2011

before leaving the house, a lady should stop, look in the mirror, and remove one piece of jewelry. – coco chanel

mixed media painting

restraint speaks volumes. understated beauty is breathtaking. don’t you agree? in fashion and in art.

i have this problem when i am painting. i like to keep adding bits and pieces. i have a hard time leaving my paintings simple. i always feel the need to add more.

but i am learning restraint right now. leaving a little bit of white canvas showing. not obsessing over every detail. letting my intuition lead me and moving on to the next painting.

i found a new vein of creativity this last weekend. i am preparing for an art show. i don’t have time to mess around. because of this i started looking at painting in a new light. something happened when i started painting for this show.

things clicked faster.

i listened more.

and i painted 16 paintings in two days. true story.

i am kind of on a creating high. and i am not obsessing over every painting. which just feels right. these new paintings somehow seem lighter. airier.

so i will be having an art show on august 5. super excited about this. everything has just fallen into place, including the date. so much to do in the meantime, including getting ready for my art therapy nights starting in july! it feels like july and august are just filling up fast. the summer will be over before i know it.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. June 21, 2011 10:53 am

    I need to take this advice. I tend to over-think my pieces too much as well. I always think there is something else I can do to make it better. Sometimes that is true, but most times it’s not.

    • June 21, 2011 12:17 pm

      it is so true dave! i have been pulling back on a lot of my paintings and it feels amazing! my paintings feel so much lighter and less overdone.

  2. June 21, 2011 12:02 pm

    You are on your way, I can sense it. When you showed your art on your vlog yesterday I thought they were very good. If these were the ones you practced restraint on it was beneficial. I am so glad the date is set for you show.

    • June 21, 2011 1:26 pm

      thanks teresa! and yes these were the ones that i practiced restraint on, plus the painting at the beginning of this post. i am super excited as well. thanks for being one of my cheerleaders!

  3. June 22, 2011 5:11 pm

    Wonderful advice! At times, simple is definitely better. Some of my favorite Stampington artists, like Kim Tedrow, Hanne Matthiesen, and Nancy Gene Armstrong, assemble collage pieces in a much more simple, elegant manner than I usually do, and one of my goals for this year is to experiment a bit with their downscaled composition techniques, which definitely emphasize the quality of the elements added, rather than the quantity.

    While I’m a lot like you in that I love more than anything to pull out all the stops and create a piece with as many colors, textures, and layers as possible (this is how my travel journal was created, the one that is scheduled for publication), I feel like I need to simplify in order to grow, in order to achieve a more sophisticated style. I will definitely be following your experimentation with restraint, and learning all I can from it!

  4. June 27, 2011 8:59 pm

    Perfection is overrated. Give me flaws any day.

    I like the new restraint, friend. There’s a freedom in restraint, don’t you think? And congrats on the art show!!

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