My Creative Process

My creative process is daunting. The first step is the hardest for me. I think of what I’ve done in the past, and in the back of my mind, I think, well, can I do better? Sometimes, I do, and sometimes, I don’t.

So, how do I step into the right side of my brain (the artistic one) and leave the left side alone, which, BTW, I use more of! I’m not one of those artists who can think of something in my head and quickly put that image on a canvas to create a work of art; that’s not me.

I use my own process to overcome my inability to create an image. I take the picture and project it onto the canvas using an autograph. Then, using a Sharpie, I outline the primary image. Next, I create the underpainting (basic first colors) into the image with my unique choice of colors. It’s kind of like painting by the numbers, without the numbers. Being severely dyslexic is a plus when choosing colors, such as fluorescent paints, which are always vivid and bright. This is what gave Star Stuff the 3-D effect.

My creative process for me is daunting. The first step for me is the hardest. I think of what I've done in the past, and in the back of my mind, I'm thinking, well, can I do better? Sometimes I do, and sometimes I don't.
Cathedral Shaman

My creative process for me is daunting. The first step for me is the hardest. I think of what I've done in the past, and in the back of my mind, I'm thinking, well, can I do better? Sometimes I do, and sometimes I don't.
My creative process for me is daunting. The first step for me is the hardest. I think of what I've done in the past, and in the back of my mind, I'm thinking, well, can I do better? Sometimes I do, and sometimes I don't.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the basics are done (So far, this is the progression at 30%), I start the fine-tuning by working on the next area that needs my attention. And it seems there’s always a next. This is where the magic starts to happen, and I might add, where I begin to feel I’m on the right path. Sometimes, I’m not, and I must paint something out and start over again on an area that doesn’t work for me or the art. I’m sorry to say this can happen more than once.

Now, let’s chat about skies. They’re my happy place, a canvas within a canvas. My skies’ have always been a fun place for me, from what to do in the underpainting to their shapes, what color combinations to use, and the type of bush/technique to use. Before I start in on the sky, I plan this by doing a color/design mock-up on a separate canvas and using the combinations you see here.

Now, let's chat about skies. They're my happy place, a canvas within a canvas. My skies' have always been a fun place for me, from what to do in the underpainting to their shapes, what color combinations to use, and the type of bush/technique to use. Before I start in on the sky, I plan this by doing a color/design mock-up on a separate canvas and using the combinations you see here.
Study of different skies

I love getting feedback from friends and strangers alike. I ask them, could you look at this artwork again and again and again? The look on their faces is the tell I’m looking for, good or bad; either way it prompts me to ask a new question or not. This feedback is valuable to me and the artwork.

In 2003, I attended an Arne Westerman watercolor workshop in Roxbury, NJ. We all have times in our lives that send us in a new and different direction in life. This workshop was one of those times. Having had the opportunity to take this workshop changed the way I paint. This workshop taught me that your eye should go into the painting, take in the image, and decide if it’s worth repeating. Is it interesting? Also, the eye needs a place to rest. I think I learned to appreciate what worked and what didn’t in terms of style, color, balance, shapes, and design.

When creating my next original, I always ask myself: Is this my next best painting? Sometimes, it is, and sometimes, it’s not! When I painted “Tequila Sunrise,” the answer was yes, although of course, I didn’t know that at the time.

The most important part of this entire start/finish process is where I think, relax, and sit. This is the exact spot where I make that decision. Am I done yet? If I’m not absolutely positive, I live with it until I am happy. Sometimes, I make minor/little adjustments before I come up with a yes.

My Creative Process
This is my spot for pondering what comes next when I’m in my creative zone.

Artistic License

The “Artistic License” you see here is what I received from Arne Westerman, a prolific artist and mentor, on April 26, 2003; it was what motivated me to write this story. I love the phrase “SERIOUSLY CONSIDERED. ” I appreciate his humor, and it mirrors mine!