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"ET" - Watercolor - Working from life/Museo Bahia de Caraquez/Ecuador

“ET” – Watercolor – Working from life/Museo Bahia de Caraquez/Ecuador

I do not know myself how I paint it. I sit down with a white board before the spot that strikes me. I look at what is before my eyes, and say to myself, that white board must become something. (Vincent van Gogh)

P1550790 ET2

Anyone who has spent time drawing or painting will remember times of awe, when one steps back from the work and asks, ‘How did I do that?’  If one blocks out most all other thought processes and plunges entirely into the soothing waters of drawing or painting, expect success!

P1550787 ET museo bahia de caraquez

When something is weighing heavily on my mind, or if others are chattering while I am working, my concentration is scattered, and my work suffers.  In order to magically transform that white paper into a ‘keeper,’ I block out all else and become one with what I am painting.  Stopping at inopportune times – for me – is like awakening from a dream.  It’s hard to resume at the same level of concentration, and my brush makes a few wrong turns before I get back on track.

Studying artifacts in a quiet museum is a joy!

Studying artifacts in a quiet museum is a joy!

Those ‘How did I do that?’ moments usually don’t happen when I’m painting in the company of society!  When others are talking,  my attention becomes fragmented, and my concentration wavers.  In serene settings, my senses are enhanced, and I am much more aware of subtle nuances of sound, wind and aromas that somehow enhance my ability to concentrate.

Try drawing or painting while others are talking, and then go somewhere quiet and draw for the same amount of time.   Are you uncomfortable with complete silence?  If so, play some non-obtrusive music in the background and see if that helps!  I’d love to hear what is your ideal environment for drawing or painting!

Senorita Valdivia - stages of watercolor

Senorita Valdivia – stages of watercolor

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