Tuesday, August 24, 2010

FALL Class Schedule Now Posted!!!

Detail of Texture from Autumn Tree, Watercolor Painting

The kids go back to school in our county today. The football season has begun and the voter booths are open today, and even though it doesn't feel like it.....it's gotta be Fall! And it's shaping up to be a busy Autumn with lots of new classes on the schedule! Please visit September's i•Trav•e•logue for all the details!
Detail of Texture from Autumn Tree, Watercolor Painting

The two images above are details from a recent painting exploration we did in the Artful Journaling: Explorations class. As I was talking with my husband about this painting, I found myself calling it a failure.....and I knew that wasn't right. I stopped to examine what I was saying. I was a bit disappointed that once again the need to be perfect had slid back in.

You see, I had judged this painting a failure because the end result, the "product," is not destined to be a show piece, a gallery piece or even a display piece. When I looked at the process and what I learned, this painting was a tremendous success! Once again, I found myself needing to redefine "failure" as well as reminding myself of what my goals for the piece were to begin with!

A failure, to me, would be when I didn't learn anything, when my goals are not clear, or when I repeated an action from a past experience that had already taught me it would not work. I did not set out to create a show piece with this painting. My goal was to learn a simple technique and how I could push it and do different things with it. That goal was accomplished. So where did this word "failure" come from?

It came from fear. Fear that I would be judged as a bad watercolorist at the very least and a complete idiot at the worst. Because it wasn't a "perfect" painting. Fear of not being "good enough" is an insidious thing....and it requires vigilance to keep it out of our thoughts!

12 comments:

  1. It's reassuring to see that I'm not the only one who has to fight this tendency. It also helps to remember that we often learn the most from our "failures." And we never will grow if we never try to stretch beyond what we can already do with ease.

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  2. Well said, Laure! I have to write that down and print it out, and pin it on a board in front of me, I think! Hahaaaa! Love these...

    Good luck with your classes. If I wasn't going to be tearing all over creation in a week or so, I'd want to do this.

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  3. Great post, Laure!

    I have to remind myself constantly that it is process NOT product! Even if I'm working on a commissioned piece or something for a gallery show, I figure that I'm ALWAYS learning!

    Your tree is wonderful! I love textures of all types, and this is very appealing, especially the colors you chose. Can't wait for fall!

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  4. Hey, Randi! Thanks for stopping by!

    KJ, I think it's frightening how many of us do that...condition of the human beast?

    Sue, quite often, I write this stuff so I DON'T forget!! Good luck on your travels. Stay safe!

    Thanks, Elizabeth! I guess it's an age old battle between process and product.

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  5. It's a beautiful piece.... vibrant, glowing colors that are the essence of Fall. I love it!

    Failure? No way!

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  6. I always come to your blog for inspiration and this post did not let me down!!! Totally well said and I can need to apply this to some of my projects!!! Great post and beautiful pieces!!

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  7. that middle tree feels so cool to me, as in cool weather...rich in color and substance...the third painting shows me the texture that one of your students talked about in her blog!

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  8. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and fears and wise words! I get bogged down with similar thoughts.

    I really like this colorful piece. It is perfect for heading in to Fall.

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  9. Hmmm, I'm one of those people that love to try things that didn't work the first time over and over. Sometimes I finally realize it just won't work but sometimes I find it's me rather than the technique and then I try to figure out why. I sure do understand not wanting to look like a fool/failure in front of anyone much less my peers. I actually know of some people who, if they've seen you fail once, decide a failure is just what you are so it makes it difficult sometimes to stick my neck out there. Then I have to stop and think about who I am doing things for and it's not for those people!

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  10. Laure, I learn so much from you including from your thought processes when you are facing a result that you did not expect. Thanks. Personally, I love your fall colors and the textures you created!

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