I think the affinity that I have for art is definitely inborn. Art isn’t something I grew up with or was tutored in, so when I stumbled upon it on my own, something clicked. The natural ability to draw and paint is ingrained in some people, too. But not all of us are gifted with an innate artistic sense, and I don’t think talent cancels out the equally important willingness and desire to steep yourself in and truly perfect your craft.
Some artists have egos and some even have enough talent for them to believe their work is heaven-sent—a panacea that can change the world. Me? I’ve never felt more human than when I’m drawing or watercolor painting. That’s when I feel truly humble, as I fumble and grope for ways of capturing the life, atmosphere, movement, and excitement of the world around me in a drawing or painting. But don’t get me wrong—it is an impassioned struggle, a glorious goal worth reaching for.
Whenever I pick up a pencil or brush, I think of Michelangelo. He was gifted beyond belief and is at the zenith of Western art, but his life wasn’t easy—it set the precedent for the kind of mental anguish and doubt that put truth to the term “tortured artist.” He constantly felt that his hands could never attain what he saw in his mind’s eye. No matter how much arrogance and umbrage he displayed in public, he was plagued by the same indecision and doubt that I feel when I’m really committed to a project but am not quite sure if it is going to come together the way I hope.
That’s why I make it a point of seeking out new inspiration and quality art instruction, especially with watercolor painting–because I still have tons to learn. Without either of these, you can’t hope to fully utilize the talent and skill you have. A Little Watercolor with Karin Huehold is a painting workshop you can access right now through ArtistsNetwork TV. It is a fun-filled two-hour workshop that we spend painting watercolor landscapes on a small-scale. I love it! It gave me license to be free with my gestures but it actually got me somewhere because I wasn’t wasting time being intimidated by a ton of white space. You learn color mixing, brush techniques, and how to experiment with the medium.
A Little Watercolor with Karin Huehold went a long way for me. It is an engaging resource that provokes new ideas and confidence with brushstrokes, color, and paint manipulation, which are all key to making significant breakthroughs in your watercolor work. Enjoy it!