Monthly Archives: January 2023

An Everyday Artist

I’ve been drawing since grade school, and painting since highschool. I always knew I could not be a professional artist, because I could not paint and draw everyday, all the time. I knew I lacked the essential inspiration to produce art on demand.

I produce an average of 3-4 paintings a week now, but they are simple, and quick to do. I have learned to be a full time artist, even though I do not paint full time right now. I know I COULD, if the financial motive was there, and I know I could produce between 4 and 20 paintings a day, depending on what media, method, and batch production method I was working.

There are major things that have changed since highschool.

First, I know how to work. I know how to do a JOB day after day, and when it comes down to it, painting is just another job.

Second, I know how to do CREATIVE work every day, all day. I learned that as a web designer, doing computer graphics and website design, and doing web development to create individual solutions for each website.

Third, I know how to use TECHNIQUE, and how to develop METHODS and SYSTEMS to produce work more quickly, and more efficiently.

Fourth, I know how to RESEARCH and STUDY the works of other artists for inspiration and to learn new styles, methods, and techniques. That began with Bob Ross in about 1992.

Fifth, I know how to get up in the morning and just do the work. Just do the work that is here to do today.

The biggest thing that makes it so I can WORK as an artist is that I know how to get up and do the work, and that I now consider art to BE work, not just something I do for my soul. It IS still that, but I can do THAT as work!

Long ago, art was not BUSINESS for me. Now it is. But it produces a PRODUCT, and that makes it business.

I am an artist every day. I am a writer every day also – I made THAT transition long ago. I don’t LOSE something by being an artist every day. I gain something.

When I am not working on a painting, I am often studying a work that I plan to use as my reference work to paint from. I am sometimes researching categories of painting material to learn styles, compositions, color usage, and other elements that allow me to be READY to paint when I pick up the canvas and brush.

I study the techniques of other artists, but I also practice to REFINE my own use of technique to create various stylistic elements. I also work to refine METHODS, both those that I learn from other artists, and those I create on my own.

All that time, between youth, and middle age, I was learning. The things that come to make me ABLE where I was not then, are not merely artistic, but mechanical, intellectual, displinarial, and analytical. I am more of a person now, and that makes me more capable.

The art has a long way to go to improve as I want it to. But the rest of me does also. I’m not ready today to paint a highly detailed large work. But maybe I will be in a month or year or two. Because I’ll be even MORE of a person then than I am now.

But now, for the first time in my life, I am an artist every day… An everyday Artist.

View my scratchings and smearings at Firelight Heritage Farm Library and Gallery.

Rescuing The Failed Work

Sometimes you create a thing, and the thing is DECIDEDLY WRONG.

And sometimes you can SEE RIGHT THERE what is wrong.

Sometimes you can fix it. And sometimes you cannot.

I have paintings that have a flaw, that I cannot fix. I have the SKILL to fix it, and I have the knowledge of what is wrong.

But when you finish a painting, and clean up the paints, it is often really scary to go back again to correct something. It is HARD to get the paints mixed right, and if they are wrong, the correction might just be WORSE than the flaw you are trying to correct.

More times than I can recall, I have chosen NOT to repair a flaw, because the risk that I will completely destroy the painting is so great I just can’t make myself do it.

Sometimes though, it can be done. It isn’t always worth it with a really bad flop, but often it is.

Corrections, it seems, are full of “sometimes”.

I spend part of yesterday correcting two paintings. One had glitter glue that ran into the wrong area, so I had to paint over it, and then re-glitter it. Easy enough if I can match the paints and the glue, and I could, well enough.

The other required some creative modifications. It is BETTER, but not sufficient. I shall have to correct it again. This one also has glitter. So I need to paint, and then glitter. If I can get the color right.

One more waits, and it is a major undertaking. Matching the colors is only part of the equation, and I could entirely ruin it by trying. But it is not a work that has value as it is, so correcting it is the only thing I can do. The risk MUST be taken.

Meanwhile two half-finished paintings with oceans in the middle, and seashell framing are waiting to be finished. So I struggle to balance the time. Correct the old, or finish the new?

And how can I just do both?


This painting just did not make much sense, because you cannot see the outline of the flower well enough to differentiate it from the background. I feared touching it up, because I was afraid I could not match the colors.


Gave it a try anyway, and failed utterly to match the warm reddish tones of the original colors. The color I used is a bit too orange. Fears realized. Not sure if the painting is better, or worse. But you CAN see that it is a flower, even at some distance. The color difference otherwise, between the two, is just camera color issues.

Grow a Garden!

Gardening doesn't have to be that hard! No matter where you live, no matter how difficult your circumstances, you CAN grow a successful garden.

Life from the Garden: Grow Your Own Food Anywhere Practical and low cost options for container gardening, sprouting, small yards, edible landscaping, winter gardening, shady yards, and help for people who are getting started too late. Plenty of tips to simplify, save on work and expense.