my creative resolution

Continuing my creative journey into 2015!


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Results of my “Assembly Line Painting” experiment. {Please vote for your favorite!}

assemblyfinal
I finished the four paintings that I working on in “assembly line” fashion. Click here to read more about how I approached working on these paintings.

Results: The results of the experiment are best described by this analogy: It’s like raising kids. You raise them in the same way – same environment, same food, activities, etc. but they all require different special attention and they all turn out different. And with each kid, you are a bit wiser (and more tired) so you do things differently each time – but maybe not better.

This is the inspiration painting:
bloomwave

The four painting above are numbered. Some of them were “worked” on more. For # 1-3 I used white gouache. As I worked I wasn’t sure what methods would be most successful – more details? more shadows? more white? more variation in color?

I’d love to hear what you have to say! Leave a comment and answer my poll below.

 

 

Conclusion: (Don’t all experiments have a conclusion?) Working this way, really allowed me to explore this type of painting and subject matter in more and more depth. If I had only painted one beach landscape, I wouldn’t have had the chance to try different techniques.

TRY IT! and let me know your results (and thoughts). Link to this post or if you’re on Instagram use #assemblylinepainting. Can’t wait to see! :)


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Take advantage of the new school year and fresh start by improving your productivity!

Eileen McKenna {my creative resolution}:

Thought you might be interested in this post I wrote on my business blog. :)

Originally posted on Eileen McKenna:

schoolsupplies

Wow, before we know it, school will be starting and Summer ending! As much as I love Summer, I love the start of the school year. For me, it feels like a fresh start and a time for resolutions, more so than New Year’s. This year I want to be more productive and make every second count!

As an avid list maker, the article, “The Daily Routine Experts Recommend for Peak Productivity,” on Entrepreneur.com, really spoke to me. It includes the The Ivy Lee Method:

  • “At the end of each work day, write down the six most important things you need to accomplish tomorrow.
  • Prioritize those six items in order of their true importance.
  • When you arrive tomorrow, concentrate only on the first task. Work until the first task is finished before moving on.
  • Move any unfinished items to a new list for the next day.
  • Repeat this process every…

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Doodling over and over

cupcakes
Lately I’ve been using a really smooth gel pen in my sketchbook. I’ll pick a subject and draw it over and over, while watching TV. It’s very relaxing. The doodles usually get better and better as I practice.

As you can see I’m usually watching shows about making desserts! And pretzals are my favorite TV watching snack.

I need to find a similar smooth gel pen that is waterproof – Any recommendations?

pretzals icecream


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The wonderful things I find while running

sunflowerbee
The weather has been so humid and hot! I haven’t felt like running, but I made myself go yesterday. Afterwards I was so glad I went. I felt great. I run because it makes me feel good, not just physically but mentally. It’s a break from life, where I can get lost in my thoughts or whatever audiobook or podcast I’m listening to. It motivates me.

Often I see things I would never notice if I was driving by. I’ll stop and take photos. Many of those photos become paintings. Here are a few:

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School starts in 2 weeks!

I can’t believe it’s almost time for the kids to go back to school. This year we go back before Labor Day, which seems like a crime, especially because we live near the beach. This Summer went so fast and the kids are growing up. 😢
When they were little, by this time in the Summer, I’d be exhausted and wishing for the start of school. Now, two out of three are teenagers, and I realize how precious our time together is! College is just a few years away. 😪

2015/08/img_8683.png


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Assembly Line Painting {an experiment}

assembly
I recently had some success with a fairly quick beach landscape. The blooms that unintentionally formed and looked like crashing waves was a large part of the success. I was curious if I could recreate this and decided to set up several boards (watercolor paper taped to cardboard) to paint all at once. My plan was to paint specific sections in each painting, one right after the other, using a similar process.

The process:

  1. With blue watercolor pencil, draw horizon line
  2. Paint the sky
  3. With grey watercolor pencil define edge of the water and paint it
  4. Paint deep part of the ocean
  5. Add water at edge of the deep ocean to get sucked into deep part and create blooms (crashing waves)
  6. Add finishing touches

 

As you know, I’ve set up personal painting parties before, where I get started on several paintings at once. Usually the paintings share a common theme or inspiration. But this is the first time I’ve attempted several versions of the same painting at once. Immediately I noticed that I was learning nuances or experimenting a little on each painting in an attempt to make it better. I knew from the start that they would never be identical, which is something I didn’t want anyway.

This year I’ve seen, several times, that digging deeper in a theme can lead to better results. I think the same is true here. I’m learning by painting the same thing over and over.

At this point each painting needs some special attention and some finishing touches. I’m not sure I can do this step at the same time. We’ll see. :)

Hoping for some “bloom” waves:
bloomwaves


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Practicing on scrap paper before diving in

finalcone
After the debacle of the sunflower. I decided to practice on a scrap piece of paper before starting a painting of an Echinacea flower. This way I would have a plan on how to paint it.
scrap

The scrap paper coneflower came out pretty good, so I started my painting. I loved the start of this painting. But when I went back to add some details I felt like I messed it up. Why is it that working quick can look great, but sometimes when you work harder at something (more deliberately), you overwork it, and ruin it?
startofthecone

So here I am with a scrap of paper, that several people love, and an unfinished painting. And I am stuck.

I wrote the above 4 weeks ago! Ironically yesterday’s post was “Forcing myself to finish.” This Echinacea flower project is a great example of me not finishing – I felt I had ruined it, didn’t know how to proceed, so I stopped. Two days ago, I pulled it out, added details in ink, and declared it finished.

No matter how a project comes out it feels great to finish!

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