A Week of Painting

It was back in June when I indicated that I was going to start flexing a few of my creative muscles outside of photography, and I’ve been doing pretty good at expanding my creative endeavors this past year, although it took me a few months to finally post something here on the site that wasn’t photographic in nature! I made some ascemic work and ink drawings during the course of the residency in the Netherlands, and while here in Wyoming I’ve been making some bird drawings, and have cracked open my watercolors for the first time in a while to work on those.

Last week I mentioned that I was waiting to start another project when some supplies arrived, and they came in the mail on Friday, so I made my first-ever acrylic painting this weekend! I have to confess that it’s something I’ve been meaning to do for years, but I’ve never really had an idea of what I might be inclined to paint until I got here. It’s been a lot of fun to do something new, and it certainly uses a suite of similar but different skills from working in watercolor! I’m glad to have the experience in mixing colors, but the acrylics handle differently, and I have to work a little quicker, as I can’t simply re-wet my palette when things get dry.

I suppose the obvious thing to do would be to talk about what sort of paintings I’ve been working on, but I think I might sit on them for just a little bit longer, and make a few more before I dramatically unveil them, so I have more than one and a half paintings to show you!

In the meantime, I’ve really been enjoying the process. I suppose it’s healthy to do new things, and though I’m not exactly advanced in my age or anything, I’d prefer to be the sort of person that is willing to try (and sometimes fail!) at new things throughout my life than settle into a routine of habit. That in itself isn’t too bad, but I don’t want to get so comfortable that I avoid new things. Besides, as a photographer, I’m getting pretty used to things changing whether I want them to or not. Whether it’s a software update that “breaks” your workflow, or they’ve discontinued your favorite type of film, change seems to come to photography more rapidly than other arts!

There’s something to be said for a deep level of skill development that comes from exclusive dedication and repetition, but my experience is that sometimes the new thing can influence or affect the old thing in very positive ways. Color mixing is certainly a new “muscle” in my brain that doesn’t have to be often flexed in my usual photographic practice! I’m attentive to color, of course, but I seldom think about trying to create a specific shade from a few limited options when I’m walking around with a camera.

And speaking of trying new things, there’s just a few dozen hours left before the end of the month, which marks the end of our fundraising deadline for the Summit to Sea project. I know I keep saying this, but anything you do to help spread the word will really help us out in this endeavor. We’re still short of our goal by a significant margin, so the odds aren’t looking good for our success here, but I’m trying to stay positive, and I know that every little bit helps. I’m not ready to give up until March 1st, and even then I’ll be re-strategizing, rather than forgetting about it. If you’ve already helped to spread the word, or become a backer, thank you! Lorie and I really, really appreciate your support, and even if our fundraising efforts aren’t successful, we’re glad to know that lots of folks out there believed enough in the idea to back it. And if you haven’t opted to become a backer yet, there’s still time to click that big green button on the Kickstarter page!

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