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Reclaiming My Time (And Space)

April 5, 2018

Studio from Entrance

Lots of exciting things going on in the studio these past few weeks. But first I had to clear the space in order to work. Since then, I’ve been painting away, and in the down times (what are those?) have been teaching a weekly beginning watercolor class to a group of 8 women.

I’m teaching it because I want to get better at it myself. I have taken numerous watercolor classes and workshops over the years, but never did keep it up. It was frustrating every time, and so unforgiving that I just gave up. But it has always been something I wanted to conquer, primarily because it is such a gorgeous medium when done right. I stay just a step or two ahead of the students, so it’s a win-win for all of us. Teaching gives me the discipline that I need to stay on task and practice daily.

The bonus surprise from immersing myself in watercolor is that it is making me a better painter overall. It’s a little too soon to see where that will lead, but already it’s beginning to break me out of some of my old habits and helping me to see new possibilities.

I’ve been working on several new paintings on canvas, and a new series of 8-inch square paintings on paper. I’m struggling at the moment for a title for the new series of squares, and it just isn’t coming to me yet. So I’ll stop struggling and then maybe it will reveal itself when the time is right.

Here is one canvas that I finished over the weekend.

“Spring Thaw” – Acrylic on gallery wrap canvas, 24×30 inches – Available for Sale

And here’s a peek at one of the 8″ square ones. These are acrylic on Arches 300# rough paper with a hand-deckled edge. No titles as yet.

New Series, #2 – Acrylic on 300# Arches watercolor paper

I am overjoyed to have had some recent painting sales. That has provided a great impetus to keep heading out to the studio every day.

Here’s hoping you’re having some discoveries and inspirations too. Stay creative!


10 Comments leave one →
  1. Sandra Kennedy permalink
    April 5, 2018 5:04 pm

    Hi Martha. I just LOVE your latest works. Good for you with the watercolour, I wish you every success. Actually I’ve found you learn a lot by trying to teach something, as you really have to get on top of it in a way that you don’t necessarily when attending a class or workshop. I’m moving back to abstract (with landscape elements in some of them) and really enjoying that. I’m sure we will all look forward to enjoying your watercolour paintings when you feel the time is ready to share.

    • April 5, 2018 5:45 pm

      Thank you, Sandra! I agree 100 percent about teaching. Good thoughts to you in your new abstract adventures! I look forward to seeing some of them. Not sure if I’ll ever have watercolors worthy of showing, but I will share them if I do.

  2. patqu permalink
    April 5, 2018 5:57 pm

    You are ongoing inspiration for me. I gave up on the watercolors since I could not seem to master them. I love the effects that others are able to create. Good for you. Love the new large painting, spring thaw. But then all you do are great..
    The title will come.

  3. April 5, 2018 9:14 pm

    Beautiful paintings! I am planning to do a drawing class this summer, because I can’t seem to muster the discipline to draw on a regular basis, and my skills get rusty as a result. Win-win, I totally get it!

  4. April 7, 2018 6:27 pm

    I admire your courage to dive in and teach others as you learn yourself! Cool strategy to get yourself out of a creative rut.

    • April 7, 2018 7:22 pm

      It’s a big dive, Tina. But it has worked out for everyone involved. It gives me courage.

  5. Gillian Metcalfe permalink
    November 8, 2019 12:16 pm

    Martha, I love your little paintings of single flowers. We were taught at school the Charlotte Mason philosophy – had to paint a flower, leaf, bird, shell every day in our Nature Notebooks and add a thought or poem. Also I know the feeling of a cluttered studio as I have artist here and have to make space for them and can’t find any for me! But it is all good.
    Thanks for all your wonderful suggestions. Do you know Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s flower paintings?

    • November 24, 2019 9:52 am

      Thank you, Gillian. I will definitely check out Mackintosh’s paintings. And thanks for the empathy! Stay tuned for a progress report.

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