I just got back from spending 5 days painting in Portland, Oregon with Jesse Reno. If you want to loosen up, I definitely recommend taking a class from him.
This was a promised break from teaching, writing my book and my daily routine. It had been weeks since I had been able to paint with abandon - no deadline, no expectations....except one. I expected to push myself to resist over working, let go and embrace the raw marks. This is my 3rd year and I keep returning because I always take something new away and I relish being able to paint with a group of like minded folks. Normally I paint in relative isolation, as I am sure many artists do, but every so often I need to create with others. I finished (I think) 3 pieces during the 5 days. I love the first piece, even though it is pretty close to my usual paintings. I worked on 3 separate 16 x20" boards separately, then shuffled them until I could see the possiblilites.
Here is how they started:
|Finished....It can be displayed like this, but also like the process photo above.|
The second painting went a bit faster as it started with a ground I had done previously....
|The start...I gave it to Jesse to do his thing first.|
|Not loving it....I basically painted what Jesse had started, so I flipped it upside down and kept going...|
|finish..."Tonic" to my tired brain!|
My breakthrough piece happened so fast that I did not get progress photos. I found a concert poster outside the studio on a phone pole and added it in with my paint. The figure just emerged.
|I wanted to refine the face, but resisted, keeping it pretty raw.|
It was 5 days of unexpected results and pushing past my usual urges to pretty things up.
There is great value in pushing yourself to move past your comfort zone.