View Full Version : The Goal Posts for July 2005

07-01-2005, 10:50 PM
For the Yanks Amongst Us --- Happy Fourth of July!!

OK, we're going to try this again. As you probably know, we lost the earlier part of July 1st posts, so our first attempt at goals this month are off in the ozone somewhere, never to be found again. Those of you who regretted making goals in some rash burst of enthusiasm now have your chance to fine tune 'em and post 'em again! :evil:

For myself, I just hope to get back into the studio and to the easel again with some regularity. If I can do that, I'll be half way home. How bout the rest of you???

Following is the usually spiel about what the thread is all about:
This is a thread dedicated to goal setting. Doesn’t matter what KIND of goal you choose; that’s up to you, but the idea is to ask yourself what your art goals are. Want to change subject matter, technique, try some different colors than you usually use, or just work more consistently and productively than in the past? This is the place for you!

This area is all about supporting each other in reaching our personal art goals and acting a bit like our very own cheerleading team. It can be a bit lonely at that easel day in and day out. Sometimes, just a few words of positive feedback and encouragement when we find ourselves sliding into a slump can make all the difference. Here, we can choose our goals, discuss them, and think them through in an ongoing way.

This is a place you can feel free to try ANYTHING you want to with your artwork and be assured of encouragement, not criticism. No one will laugh at your lopsided barn or clashing colors; nobody cares if you yearn to paint nothing but antique milk cartons; we’ll welcome anything you want to try and treat it with respect whether it’s traditionally "arty" or not. Feel free to break the "rules" sometimes without fear of reprimand! This is a place to take risks and push yourself a bit more than usual. It’s also a place to have FUN.

Each person is free to set their own goals….some will find 100 paintings ….or any set number at all a bit daunting. Maybe a number goal isn't what you're after at all. No worries, just do your best to tell us what you're hoping to achieve and we'll support you in every way we can. I think that's the first order of business for each participant…deciding just what their personal goal is at this point in time. I think we should allow for those goals to mutate and change direction along the way and everyone can change focus freely by simply re-stating his or her goals anew. So those interested in taking part in this might want to think out their goals and reasoning, etc. and then try to post it here in the Goal Posts thread so the rest of us will know your needs and direction and can try to support you with them.

The main rule for this area is that it is a NO CRITIQUE NOW (NCN) ZONE. This may seem silly on the surface, but we’ve had some newbies AND vet WC’ers who have been negatively affected by strenuous critiquing too early in whatever process they were working through. Some have given up posting their work at all unless they were totally sure it would be beyond reproach. I’ve been very lucky in this; feedback on my work has been kind and very, very helpful, but I have seen occasions when such was not the case. For the experienced tough-hided folks among us, that’s no problem. But in here, it’s not allowed. That’s one thing you don’t have to worry about for awhile. If you CHOOSE to invite full critiques (and I’d encourage you to do so when you’re ready and when what you’re doing is at the right stage), we ask that you copy the work in question to the appropriate Studio (Oil or Soft Pastel) and ask for critiques from participants there. I don't for a moment think anyone here in the Pastel forum has been INTENTIONALLY mean in their critiquing, so don't get me wrong here; it's just that there is a time for frank discussion of someone's work, both good and bad, and there's a time to give the artist some space.…

While negative feedback is verboten here, SUPPORTIVE feedback is welcome and encouraged! We all like an occasional pat on the back, after all! Just try to be as specific as possible in your supportive comments…WHAT did you like about the piece in question, what neat effect did it have on you, etc. This helps the artist so much more than just saying, "Love it!" It's also okay to ask questions, such as "What are you aiming for with this? Color harmony or deliberate discord?" or "This is a bit different from your recent paintings…is this a permanent change in direction or just an experiment?" And it's all right for the artist to ask for specific feedback such as, "Is the model's arm too fat in comparison to the rest of her body?" Just remember to answer the question only; she'll find out the feet look like duck's feet when she goes for a full critique! Questions and answers that will help the artist THINK more clearly can be good. I just don't want anything even remotely resembling: "Well, you CAN'T have green people against a red sky…that's WRONG." Nothing you do in here will ever be considered WRONG….it may seem a bit weird, but that's fine, that's what experiments are sometimes. And who knows? You may find a niche for yourself and become famous for green people with duck's feet against red skies!

07-02-2005, 04:21 AM
My goals for July will be to keep up my sketchbook (once I find it again in this mess of studio boxes) and I have a new goal as of today that is rather important...to rebuild what was lost when my hard drive died today (I lost the hard drive in my mac that contains all of my art stuff). It is going to be good though, because I can now get really good quality, hi-res images of my paintings and then go get them made into slides.

Oh - and I think I want to get doing some plein air this summer so perhaps i will aim for at least one PA piece this month.

07-02-2005, 08:06 AM
Sorry about that hard drive! Seems a lot of us are having computer issues, even WC!

Good goals, all! Now that you're finally moved and soon to be settled in, you can really get going again with the artwork!

07-02-2005, 09:50 AM
I'll second you, Sooz. Got to get down to regular work. It's been so darned hot, and I've had a bad ankle and now a stupid heat rash all over my face. It's not that I mind being seen with it, but I'm supposed to stay out of the sun until it's healed. But, too many excuses, not enough pictures. :)
So the goal this month is to do something every day, even if it's back to painting the coffee mugs and the contents of the fridge.

I'm also going to approach some commercial galleries this month. Well, at least one. :o It was never a priority before because I never wanted to pay the gallery commission, but I need to get more work out there to be seen.

07-02-2005, 01:16 PM
My goal is to pick ONE medium and stick with it. I am all over the place. Like a kid in the candy store..... I WANT TO DO IT ALL!! I am a watercolour'st that got bit by the Art Bug major big time!! Just hopping from one medium to the next and it's driving me nuts. But there sooooooooo much running arown in my mind to do or to try. And WC isen't helping, soooooo many good places to go to, look at and try.:)

07-02-2005, 01:21 PM
LOL, Aszurblue, there IS a lot here, that's for sure! Why not pick just TWO media to work really hard on? Pastels and one other. Make pastels the quick and easy one you trade off with another that takes more muss and fuss to set up maybe. Besides, I'd think ANY art is good for the soul and for honing skills, no matter what the media. Just enjoy!

07-02-2005, 04:16 PM
My first goal is to finish the saguaro painting for husband's birthday next week. :eek:
I also need to keep painting regularly when I get home from vacation.

CM Neidhofer
07-02-2005, 04:52 PM
I see my goal was lost too. Mine is just to work more at my painting. Had some emotionally draining issues in my life over the last few months and wasn't very inspired to do much of anything. Those are resolved and I'm ready to get back to work. Have a new piece in progress now, but not ready to show it to anyone just yet. Think I'll try to make more use of that sketch book I have, and rarely use, also.


07-02-2005, 05:23 PM
Hi Sooz, Think i'v found a way out of the "candy store" I have a McCaw bird in a tropical setting. The parrot will be pastells with a little ink. Have already layed in the background sky with watercolors and a waterfall with acrylics using a knife. This is a just for fun and lurning painting. Already got the waterfall too large, so now have to find a way to pop it back into the background..... Golley this is fun!!

Piper Ballou
07-02-2005, 05:47 PM
Is is already July???????

I took two different school related classes in June, each a week long and I got lost on my goals for painting last month.
This month, again, Paint, Paint, Paint,

1.Already completed one goal, we joined the local art guild, went to a meeting this morning, not sure this group has much direction but need the know the local art events etc....
I am going to post a painting on their website.
Also, check when I can have a show at the art museum here.

2. Painting a landscape for sure this month....I have been following Deborah (dee_artist) and Tammy's WIP on their landscapes....going to even post it as a WIP, okay that is getting scary for me

3. My husband's goal is to get some of my paintings framed ( I just said that because sometimes he lurks in here)

4. Most of all, have fun and seek out the little joys of life.

Well, I am off to a great start..

07-02-2005, 06:03 PM
I would like to do one pastel, and one watercolor at least 4 days of the week- ya gotta wash the laundry and clean the cat and dog fur off every once in a while...
Cori I am sorry about that hard drive. I am really bad about doing back-ups....

07-02-2005, 06:25 PM
Thanks purples...I am hoping we can recover it today or tomorrow, sometime. Cam has an older G4 that we took it out of (it was a new hard drive, but it was in his old machine just before he bought a new one) and we are hoping that if we put it back into the old machine it might still work and we can recover everything...my fingers are crossed so hard i can barely feel them!

Kathryn Wilson
07-03-2005, 11:51 AM
Sooz, how long has the Goals thread been up - I can't remember when we started it. If it has been a year, those of us who started at the beginning should review our yearly goals and see if we even came close - :) !

07-03-2005, 12:38 PM
ACK...no, we still have time! Actually, we started the Goal Posts in the latter half of October last year. I know it SEEMS like forever, but...frankly, I'm glad to have a few months left! I've only done a little less than half of my 100 and that's counting a handful of non-pastel pieces. Push comes to shove, I'm not going to beat myself up too much if I don't reach 100, but I still would like to come as close as possible.

Now that you mention it, tho, this might be a good time for all of us to assess where we're at with those old goals. In some cases, the original goals have been modified either up or down or just changed entirely. That's okay too...the idea is to HAVE a goal or two and to work toward them even if they do change. So how is everybody doing? How many of us were on board in the beginning?

Kathryn Wilson
07-03-2005, 12:44 PM
Sooz, do you have a link handy that goes back to the very first month? I'd like to review what I posted - don't go to too much trouble, I can find it, but it goes back quite a ways in my posts.
Yikes, I just did a search and it only went back 500 posts. I guess I will have to come up with some pretend goals - :evil:

07-03-2005, 01:15 PM
Wow! Do you suppose we lost the stuff before that big multi-day glitch awhile back? Or maybe there's a limit of how much is kept archived? Yikes....we need to check this out! I've bookmarked a lot of stuff for future reference and would hate to find out it's no longer there!

07-03-2005, 01:19 PM
OK, here it is...and it was SEPTEMBER of last year, not October! So we've got less time than we thought! ACK!


Two and a half months and counting! Warm up those sticks, pencils, crayons, watercolors or whatever your choice is and get BUSY!

Kathryn Wilson
07-03-2005, 02:32 PM
Wow, I just read all the way through the first Goals thread - lotta work going on in there. I feel re-miss that I have not been keeping up with the subsequent threads. I wonder if we want to archive these in the Pastel Library? - at least for the year so we can go back and review, then start over in September (or January) again?

It's almost sad reading the posts - we have lost so many people off WC that we never hear from again - :(

I have achieved more than my commitment in goals (rather than #'s of paintings):

I've joined a two Pastel Societies.
Entered the Oil Pastel show.
Attended IAPS.
Working on more plein air paintings.
Did a portrait!!!!

Not sure what # of painting I am up to - but definitely not 50.

07-03-2005, 03:37 PM
Well, if all you have to do is worry about the total # of ptgs, you're halfway home! I agree...we seem to be missing many of the first people these days. Has anyone heard hide nor hair out of Mikki lately???

I'm still working toward my goal of 100 tho I doubt I'll make it...but I'm counting everything, including sketches at this point as long as they are full and honest efforts (not just doodling). I'm also counting colored pencil, oil pastels (if any ever turn out!), watercolors, oils, whatever media I use, not just pastels. I figure I learn from all of it, so it counts! Last count I was up to 40 or 41, counting the minis for the postcard thingie, which in itself is amazing when I think of all the time I've been blasted out of art mode by life in general. With a bit of discipline, I think I can do a lot more over the next couple months.

I also think we should probably start the next year at New Years, don't you? Would be part of the New Years resolution thing and something folks would be in the mode for then. What do the rest of you guys think?

07-03-2005, 07:26 PM
You all have some great goals for the month. I've decided that I'll have only one goal: Not to get discouraged.


07-04-2005, 12:21 AM
Binkie, sometimes not getting discouraged is the hardest thing TO do! Just remember, we all hit bad patches with our art and wonder if we'll ever get better, but in the end, if we work at it, we always come out better. Things don't necessarily get any EASIER, but things do get better! Hang in there!

07-04-2005, 02:31 AM

I really didn't mean for my goal to sound negative. I do get discouraged with my art, but this month have decided that I am not going to let myself get that way.


Piper Ballou
07-04-2005, 03:14 AM
Binkie-you have to look at every drawing, every painting as a learning experience and that might help you not to get so discouraged at times...keep a folder or something of all your work and go back and look at where you were. I tend to think that everytime I have to have a painting suitable to frame...not true at all, and I am better off if I do not because I would be producing the same old art and not grow any. Does that make sense.

07-04-2005, 10:24 AM
This is the first time ive posted in the "Goal Posts" before, so i felt the need to join in ;) .

My goal for July is: Work ALOT more on my portrait drawing and painting, ive done a couple here and there and they are not to bad, but I get to a point where i realize that i had rushed through it all and then i get lost lol........so i guess "taking my time with my creations" should be my first goal. Ive stayed up for NIGHTS drawing, sketching, little painting here and there ( i reallly need to do something, cause ive got hundreds of pastels that really need to be used or hubby wont let me get anymore lol).
My other goal is to get a little better drawing with my left hand.

Im gonna need post it notes so i can remember this stuff.

07-04-2005, 11:04 AM
Welcome aboard Stephanie! You've got some good starter goals there and we're ready to offer encouragement and any other type of support that may help. Do you find that pastels are peculiarly prone to being "rushed"? Pastel is such a "fast" medium and it's so easy to do the quantity rather than quality things sometimes...

Merethe T
07-05-2005, 04:29 PM
Hi all, mind if I join you?! :) I find it inspiring to read this thread, lurk here all the time...
I've set some goals for myself for July - have six weeks of vacation to spend only on things I want to do - wonderful!

My goals are - learn landscape painting. Started and nearly finished my first, so I'm on my way here. I'm really bad at composing, need to take more time in the planning part, I'm always to eager to start painting, and run into trouble later on....

Do a childrens portrait - don't know much about that either, but want to learn! Part of this goal is getting more portrait colors - this won't be to hard to achieve - doesn't really hurt that much to buy more pastels!! :)

Do a couple of animals portraits for marketing purposes - time to earn some money too, not just spending eh...

And a last goal is to get out and take photos - ref shots for painting during the winter!

Oh - and I have one more - really gotta get myself more Wallis,it's just wonderful to work with!

So how are you all doing? Piper, how's your landscape coming along? (Nice to know I'm not alone struggling to learn... :) )

07-05-2005, 06:27 PM
Welcome, Merethe...you certainly have the right attitude...many folks dread anything new, but you seem ready to really go for it! That's very good a bodes well for your success, too. Feel free to add new goals and crow about ones you've achieved here...we all like to hear about one another's successes as well as struggles.

07-05-2005, 08:05 PM
When we want to discuss our goals further, do we do it here or start a new thread? I just have some things on my mind that apparently im not dealing with very well on my own, my husband says i just need to sit and DO IT! meaning just sit and draw. But we all have these little voices that tend to hinder us (i have the book the artists way and ive read it) but i would like to discuss these "little voices" with other artists. I feel that if i can discuss my hinderings with other artists maybe we can bring a few things to the surface that about what or how other artists feel, that way some of us wont feel alone..........does any of that make sense? lol

07-05-2005, 08:27 PM
I know just what you mean and you've come to the right place! We all have times when the mental gremlins set up shop and start making us doubt ourselves as artists. You'll find plenty of fellow sufferers here, I'm sure! And it's easy to just say "Just DO it..." and of course, that's what you finally have to do, but sometimes it's NOT so easy to get to that point, especially if you've had a less that successful show perhaps, or a painting that failed to meet expectations, or even some chance remark by someone that cut to the quick. Sometimes the worst is the expectations we place on ourselves, tho...we really can be our worst critics! So share away! We're here...and you'll find more understand co-sufferers than you can shake a stick at! We've all been through it and will face it again and again.

07-05-2005, 09:55 PM
Thanks Sooz. I do have some "cut to the quick" stories, and i would like to think that ive grown past them, but theres one that i think is hindering me without me even knowing it .........
My mother told me when i was about 12 or so that i shouldnt get serious about art and i should become more serious about math , and become an accountant, or something, because art will never pay the bills...........Now i can ramble off my feelings about that statement, but im sure i dont need to :) .

At the beginning of this year i have made it a point to practice as much as possible on my art...you all have seen how much stuff i have bought lol with all the posts about "studio pics". But i havent been using these things like i feel that i should.....I have limited myself to practicing on expensive cardstock that you get at office depot for my sketches, and let me tell ya the tooth of that stuff isnt to crazy about pastels or charcoal.......anyway, i use that stuff instead of the countless number of canson sheets, or strathmore drawing and sketching paper that i have..........and my husband asked me "why dont you use these things" and my reply, before i could even stop to think about it was...."cause i might run out" HOW CRAZY IS THAT?! He just looked at me funny and if he was holding a mirror in front of my face im sure i had the same look. Even i couldnt believe i said that........I thought about this for awhile now.....and i remembered one time when my daughter had jacked my last pad of drawing paper and used it for her doodles, and i was working on illustrations for my book (a dragon book ive been working on for a few years now) I NEEDED this last pad of paper, i had NO MONEY to buy anymore, printer paper was ment for printing (husbands work stuff) so i was left with either taking that pad away from her (couldnt do that, and you moms with artistic kids understand why) or i was gonna have to draw on the walls.........safe to say i did niether, and i was a bit upset , yes....then i got to feeling sorry for myself cause i couldnt afford a stinking pad of drawing paper.......and now that i have TONS of paper AND pastels, im hesitant to use any of it for "practice". Yes i know, how am i suppose to grow if i dont practice, or try new things on all these wonderful papers, or use all these gorgeous pastels.

Now i will say this, i have half finished paintings on my wall where i have started a painting and then halfway through it i stopped because i realize that i have forgotten something.....a step in the making...and i have just created more work for myself....(the puma is one of those paintings, i had a wip thread on that painting and have yet to get back to it).

I CAN draw, very well, if i can say so......but painting, i seem to go in headlong and dont even pay attention when i start to rush it and then when the painting becomes complicating, and no long enjoying, thats when i stop and realize i screwed up somewhere. Then i put it aside along all the other unfinished paintings, and think to myself, "Ill do better next time". Well folks im running out of wall space.
So, for the past week i have tried to slow things down a bit. Ive stayed up for countless hours trying to take my time and go back to the basics. Value study (along with drawing of course). Well would ya believe if i told you im really good with values too..go fig......so where the heck am i going wrong??? I know my cools and warm colors, my complimentaries, etc etc......
The only thing i can think of is that when i get on a roll when painting, all common sense on structure goes out the window. So how does one practice structure when painting?? Ive seen daniel greene do it to an extint. He is terrific at putting a portrait together, but when he starts to paint he follows HIS eyes, HIS instinct........and i can say this about other well known artists as well.........they can do this after many years of practice.......But....when i follow my instinct and my eyes, after i start applying paint, i "forget" a few things lol..........I do try to take breathers here and there...usually its around the third breather that ive realized that ive forgotten something........

Now after saying ALL THE ABOVE i have just realized that i do NOT have "start over" paintings anywhere lol......theres maybe one or too, but those "start overs" were studies of hair....but other than that, i have no redos..........hmmmmmmmmmm......
This is where im missing the "link" isnt it?
Instead of starting a different painting and thinking ill get better with that one, i should just keep doing the same one over and over again til i KNOW that it is right.........

See how much you all have helped me!! LOL
Thank you all for letting me ramble.....

07-06-2005, 01:55 AM
I used to feel the very same about "running out" of canvasses, wasting all that good paint, etc. It wasn't til I opened my own little art shop and had all that stuff right there in stock that I really began to grow in my oils work. So I do know what you are talking about. Thank heavens I was able to make my mind up when I started in pastels not to do that all over again! I'm not sure why I changed but could be I'm getting older and figure life's too short to worry about "ruining" a piece of paper. NOW I worry more about ruining an IDEA...I have this horrible feeling that if I take an idea for a painting and spoil it by messing up, I'll have lost the whole magic of the thing forever...I need to break THAT habit and soon!

One thing you might try if you haven't already is to make yourself a checklist and as you go along with a painting, stop every so often and check your list...are you doing this and keeping track of that and how about this other thing? Maybe if you did that religiously for awhile, it would become a habit and you'd catch yourself missing things less and less? As you say, you KNOW the various aspects you need to proceed...it just sounds like you have a problem juggling everything at once.

The guilt trip over how much you've invested in gear is a dead end street too. Best way to kick that in the slats is to get busy and put the stuff to use...even if it IS just for practice. Oh, that brings up another way I've learned to trick myself sometimes...I tell myself I'm really just practicing...I'm a lot less apt to get angsty that way. It's when I feel like I HAVE to do something perfectly that I really get tight.

So...as you say, if you mess it up the first time, try it again...you can't ruin an idea so give it another shot!

Nancy Leone
07-06-2005, 12:29 PM
O.K.....my big goal for July is to pick up a pastel each day. If nothing else I will have clean pastels but maybe if I have one in my hand I'll put something on paper. Working (real job) too many hours to find time for art.

Piper Ballou
07-06-2005, 01:17 PM
Stephanie- I understand how you feel. We live so far from an art store, so I either have a two hour drive or have to order things by mail. And I am still at the beginning stages of learning how to use pastels....this is what I decided. I am going to use my "good paper" to practice on. I sometimes cut the paper down in size but the last three paintings I did I really liked how they turned out and will eventually frame them, when I started them I had the notion that this will be an xperiment and a learning lesson. Also the biggest slap on the head came to me, when I realized that I do not have to have a perfect painting every time....I am painting, and exploring and seeing what direction art will take me, and enjoying myself....there needs be no pressure

Merethe...glad you are on to me about the landscape...I have two commissions to paint and a couple of other projects I am thinking about so right now I am painting a fat rooster...go figure....the landscape is still a goal, hopefully this weekend I will get started....thinking about doing it as a WIP because I will need a lot of help...thanks for asking, it actually made me smile....how about you???????

Merethe T
07-06-2005, 07:06 PM
Stephanie - I sooo recognize myself in what you say, for several months now I've felt like the "queen of unfinished projects", and reading your post make me think there's an explanation to the paintings I put away - structure! Haven't really thought of it like that before, but there's really something in it! I feel I'm a newbie still, and am very much in a learning prosess - but than again I think I always will thank god (always new challenges, fun!) - I read a lot, both here at WC and books, and then try to incorporate the stuff I read into my paintings. But there's so much to learn - composition, technicue, colours, values,different subjects - well you all know - and I get a feeling I do get lost sometimes in trying to put all of this to use - phew! But it gets easier, and I guess all there is to do is just practice - and maybe lower the expectations we have to ourselves? Guess this will depend on where we are - newbies or professionals - but every painting doesn't have to be perfect - at least that's what I'm telling myself, and I try to relax and have fun instead! :)

I like Sooz' idea - maybe a checklist would be good, until you develop your own rythm and structure? Cause I hope this will develop in time, as our experience and knowledge grows... Well, I'm speaking for myself here, don't know which stage you are at, but your post made me think - thanks!! Was usefull for me - love this place (don't know how many times I've said that ;) )

I've also been through the feeling of "afraid of ruining good suppliyes,running out of paper/sticks...." (well, still am to tell the truth, it still hurts when I break a perfectly good, nice full stick.... :rolleyes: ), but I'm trying to tell myself that every project I do is practice, and theres valuable lessons in everything I do - therefor - it's worth it! And it's fun! I try not to put to high expectations to myself, and really really try to losen up a bit - and every now and then I'm pleased with the finished painting. But using "the good stuff" really pays off in my opinion, I'm always happier when paper and pastels are good quality, it feels better, looks better and makes all easier. So I've decided - I deserve it! Can always order more, I like that too.... ;)

Piper - I hope you'll post your landscape as a WIP, I find there's so much to learn from watching others approach to painting, and I enjoy reading peoples thoughts along the way - so please do - it'll be great! I'm nearly finished with my first - not to happy about it but I realize I've rushed into it (bad comp, not planned in the first place, stuff like that) - but I had fun, and I've learned some valuable things that I'll bring with me to the next - ain't giving up!! Thanks for asking! (It's sitting on my easel staring at me, while I'm having fun with a portrait...lol I call it a colour study(skin colours are hard...), I'll do it for real later on - and it is working for me! I'm more relaxed, and have fun with it! Will look for your post... ;)

07-06-2005, 08:02 PM
Glad y'all are thinking this stuff through and realizing you don't HAVE to turn out masterpieces every time...or even every TENTH time! The goal is to keep growing. I think a checklist could be useful, BUT I also wanted to add that there is something to be said, when taking on some thing really new...like say a portrait for the first time...for setting a single goal for that one project...maybe it would be getting a likeness or learning how to get the skin tones right or how to do the hair or...well, on and on. But while you're doing this it's just too much sometimes to try and keep your mind on EVERYTHING in the list at the same time! If skin tones is your main goal, for instance, don't worry so much about composition and likeness...or vice versa. There's plenty of time to get it all together once you learn each component at least reasonably well. Professional jugglers (yes, there are such people) start out with just two items, after all. They work at it gradually until they can add a third and then after awhile a fourth, etc. Trying to do everything at once, especially early on is a sure way to frustration and burnout!

So let's remember the F word here...FUN!!! It's supposed to be FUN work! It can be challenging, sometimes a bit frustrating, but it's also supposed to be fun...at least most of the time! Otherwise, we might as well go sell burgers or something.

07-06-2005, 08:25 PM
Stephanie, yikes, running out of supplies is indeed a spoiler for any creativity! I know what you've been feeling, too. I've known the scarcity of supplies adding to their preciousness and I've known the use of the better supplies for the "really good artwork" that just doesn't seem to show itself.

I found that I collected too many things in my life and one day decided to just use what I had around me. The GOOD silverware, the NICE clothes, the SPECIAL doll that had to sit up on the bureau not to be touched. One day I will be gone and then someone else gets to use all the stuff I thought was for another day, certainly not as ordinary a day as today. I encourage my daughter now to use what she's given for birthdays and holidays and play with them and make memories with them. I am following my own advice and it certainly keeps the clutter down. Yah!! That's a GREAT thing.
One weekend a couple years ago a couple friends and I took a workshop on making books. At the end of the second day, we stayed later than everyone else to buy book supplies and gorgeous lovely handmade paper. The instructor looked at what we were buying (which was a good amount for each of us) and commented "Oh, you all are SHOPPERS...." I was insulted but the others laughed. A year or more later I looked at what I did with those papers...nothing. They were too precious to use and were sitting in a bin, waiting for the perfect project. I'm DONE with that thinking now. If I don't use them, someone else will and I would now rather use them than have them pass to someone else in a yard sale because I didn't use them when I was around.

Now, I am happily using ALL my best paper and pastels because I'm worth it! (That silly saying that's been said a gazillion times but it's true.) The best thing about Wallis paper is if you really don't like what you do, you get to clean it off and start another work.

My goals continue for this show in August....
I've got 8 paintings started and 4 finished. Finish the 8 left.
Frame and hang them on the wall partitions and take digital pix of the setup to replicate that day. Figure out what the booth will look like, how many supplies will fit under what table....what chairs to bring.
Finish and print my info card to hand out....partially done.
Finish website...partially done.

Even if this is a bust, it'll be a great experience and I'm loving that I've got this main goal to look forward to since it's been 14 years since my last hanging exhibition (college senior degree show!!!) It's been hectic like I knew it would be but it's invigorating, too. Maybe I can get 20 paintings done....ha! Now, that's crazy talk!
Hope you're all doing well this month!

07-06-2005, 08:55 PM
Good for you, Cindy! I need to keep that in mind too...just what AM I saving stuff for??? If not now, WHEN??? Heaven knows, I've got enough stuff to keep drawing, painting, dusting and oiling and pencilling til the end of time, so I might as well really get the good out of it.

This reminds me of a present a dear friend of mine brought me out of the blue many years ago...he'd been to an estate sale where they were selling off all the belongings of this old lady who'd died. He picked up her cigar boxes full of used pastels and a stack of her sketch books. I still have both tucked away amongst my stuff and did use some of the pastels in years past. They were all broken and well used before I got them and they looked so...well, somehow you could tell that the owner had really loved them, silly as that sounds. The sketch books really blew me away...they had sketches of every little thing from a mouse that haunted her kitchen to autumn leaves she picked up in the yard. Beautiful little sketches like a visual diary and I couldn't help but wonder what sort of family could've just thrown those in the garage sale pile along with old tupperware and heating pads. Sadly there was no name on any of it and I never knew who this woman was, but I hope she knows I've got her books and even her pastels here, safe and sound.

07-06-2005, 11:16 PM
Good for you, Cindy! I need to keep that in mind too...just what AM I saving stuff for??? If not now, WHEN??? Heaven knows, I've got enough stuff to keep drawing, painting, dusting and oiling and pencilling til the end of time, so I might as well really get the good out of it.

Sooz, I realized that I spent more $ on books and supplies and I was in the bookstore way more than my hands were using the tools that I loved reading about and buying and was letting sit in bins in the attic and basement. My husband was tired of moving my paper and art supplies in our countless moves since we've been together and he actually wanted me to get rid of alot of supplies since I never used them! I was flabberghasted that he could even have such a thought but there he did. He saw it as just another 20 + boxes he had to move once again. Well, I told him the error of his thinking, :D and happily, we haven't moved in 5 years! Yahoo!
Cindy..... oh, that was a very nice gift of the sketchbooks and pastel pieces. Priceless.

Bill Foehringer
07-07-2005, 05:29 PM
Paint more often. Send in app. for display at local library. If accepted, find a way to frame the work to be displayed. Make up business cards. Just some thoughts. Bill

07-07-2005, 07:32 PM
Good ideas, Bill! Go for it!

07-07-2005, 07:41 PM
Yes please do, i know i would be very interested in how it works for you. I didnt know one could get thier works sold at libraries. Am i the only one? Ive been told to try resteraunts tho.

Bill Foehringer
07-08-2005, 12:42 AM
I put the application in the mail this afternoon. I'm approaching this library chance as a way to introduce myself to the public. If some sell, great!The pastels cannot have a price on them. I can have a business card on each one. I can also put up a small bio and a brief explanation of plein air painting. If they approve I'll also put up some of my 'Little studio pieces' from last winter they may sell more readily. Bill

07-08-2005, 12:50 AM
Sounds as if you've got things moving right along, Bill. No, Steph, usually you can't SELL work through the library, but they often allow local artists to display their work for a set length of time. As Bill says, you can have information about yourself and how you can be contacted, but no prices. It's a good way to get exposure.

07-10-2005, 11:14 PM
Voila - one goal for July started and finished...my first Plein Air piece. I am really happy with it. In my opinion, the best landscape I have ever done (and I really suck at landscapes, usually)

"Climbing Porch Lane"
approx 4 X 6
softies on Wallis museum


Oh - and the details..I had only brought about 40 pastels with me to save on space (which was at a premium this weekend). Next time I will be bringing my easel, pastel box and stool so i can really dig in and do some serious painting.

Of course, I had said "at least one" so I think I may have to drag out my gear and get painting some more this month in the great outdoors! :D

07-11-2005, 12:13 AM
Congratulations on your first plein air! Did you X post it over in Plein Air? Looking good! Wasn't nearly so daunting as you thought it would be, was it?

07-11-2005, 12:24 AM
Yep - I cross-posted. It wasn't as daunting as I was expecting, though I did manage to ensure i was surrounded by family and not stangers...next time it will be in public :eek: And I also now know that I neet to sit down. I can't stand very long at a time so I am glad I have a backpack stool to take with me next time.

07-11-2005, 04:24 AM
Hello guys

I haven't been painting or posting for a while as I've been going through a difficult time. I didn't set any goals for July, but I thought I should come and share the news that 9 of my paintings are now on display at CB2 bistro/restaurant in Cambridge - along with artwork by Georgina (who recently joined WC and posted some of her abstracty pastels here). Our exhibition takes up two rooms and is called 'Best of Both', to reflect the fact that there's hopefully something for everyone there, with her abstracts and my more representational stuff. Everyone who eats or drinks at CB2 gets to see a menu cover featuring our art and contact details. Georgina designed these covers and I am trying to get hold of one to share with the Pastel Talk forum.

I went with some friends to visit the paintings over lunch yesterday and it was a very strange feeling to see my art up there. I do feel proud, but also somehow a bit detached from it all, because of recent events in my life. I will go back and try to get some decent photos of the setup to share.

Hope everyone else here is going strong with their goals. Congratulations Cori on your first plein air.

07-11-2005, 03:50 PM
I am looking forward to seeing those photos, E-J. It must be really exciting to see your work in a restaurant like that.

I hope things are going better for you now. Life has a way of interupting you and likes to force you down different roads once in awhile. Just remember that your friends here are always there for you. Take care.

07-11-2005, 04:16 PM
Congrats on the show, E-J! Here's hoping that your difficulties straighten out quickly!

Cori, by all means, ya need someplace to sit at least for a break now and then! I can only stand for so long, too. Ten minutes or so in and my back begins to complain big time. I do like the freedom that comes of standing, but can't do it much anymore. Where are you going to try next?

07-11-2005, 04:33 PM
We have a few really beautiful city and provincial parks in the city...Confederation Park is very close to my house and there is a stream that runs through it, complete with bridges and a little lake...I can see myself spending a day there creating several paintings...

I don't know if I will get a chance to get out there this weekend, since it is Maddy's last birthday party on Saturday, but I guess we'll see. Maybe I will take my gear with me and go paint at Fish Creek Provinical Park after the party. I used to work down there so I know alot of the "off the beaten path" areas that would make for nice paintings (provided the creek didn't flood them out this spring)

07-11-2005, 05:10 PM
Wish we had more of that type of park here. We had two which were nice with little lakes, etc. but the one got flooded out and contaminated and is closed and the other was an artificial cement lined pond that sprung a leak and dried up and now they're still working to line it with new plasticish stuff, then will take forever to refill, I imagine. Those are two possibilities for someday, tho. I also want to go to the downtown park and take some pics of the kids playing in the fountain, etc. but I don't think I'd survive a paint out there...way too crowded and not always with the best type of person, if you get my drift...

Piper Ballou
07-11-2005, 08:20 PM
Just a quick note today, it looks like everyone has been busy this month.
Cori- your painting is really nice, I bet that was a lot of fun to do
EJ- I bet that was the best feeling in the world to see your art work hanging while you were eating lunch.

I have also done a plein aire, still needs a lot of work but will work on it.
here's the post


07-11-2005, 09:54 PM
Saw your plein air; you did fabulous, lady! No more excuses now! You do TOO do plein air AND landscapes!

07-11-2005, 10:40 PM
We have a few parks like that here too...there is a really cool kids waterpark by one of the downtown markets, but I wouldn't ever want to paint there. Chances are I'd have to chase away slimy guys who wanted to "talk" or that my gear would be knocked over by skateboarders. We have a great island just off of downtown, but it fell victim to some of the worst flooding this spring so I don't know how pretty it is there anymore. I know that they had to relocate the Folk festival and Shakespeare in the Park because of the damage and the fact that the vehicle access road was washed away. That would have been another great painting location.

On the other hand, you are in the mountains there, so i am sure you have tons of beautiful painting places at your disposal...unfortunately they are probably the kind you have to hike in to...and you have Garden of the Gods nearby, do you not? I am trying to convince Cam that I need to practice painting rocks and that we should go camping in Drumheller so I can paint the badlands! :D

Piper - I saw that plein air piece too...I'll stop saying I don't do landscapes if you do, k? :D

07-12-2005, 04:52 PM
Hi all! :wave:

It has taken 2 days to read this thread and 2 more days to post. Thanks to all of you and your posts for giving me courage.

Goals for the next year:

Complete 2 pieces every week
(should help correct hoarding amongst other things)

Take a workshop
(should help quanity into quality)

Play and experiment each week
(should help keep fun, which helps keep goals)

I have been doing demos to get the feel of pastels but it's time to grow up to my own composition. I have started some sketches and small color studies for a landscape of the California coast. I also have a box full of photos from people wanting portraits, poor souls probably just want their photos back lol. So that is my immediate goal.

Here is an Elizabeth Mowry demo. Please stand way, way back from computer when viewing, go next door even.


Make believe that you are brave,
the trick will take you far,
for you may become as brave,
as you make believe you are

wish I knew where that comes from

Oh, and sorry La Liz

Bill Foehringer
07-12-2005, 05:46 PM
Hey Sooz all you have to do is one painting a week for a year and you'll be in the nineties this time next July! Two a week by January, etc. Just break it down by the week and paint each chance you get. As you do more you will become more proficient and each painting will take less time. Happy Painting! BillF

07-12-2005, 06:02 PM
Make believe that you are brave,
the trick will take you far,
for you may become as brave,
as you make believe you are

wish I knew where that comes from

Oh, and sorry La Liz

GREAT job on the Mowry-esque landscape! You're more than ready for your own compositions!

You've got a good set of goals, too. You should really be dusting up a storm now; just be sure to SHARE your efforts...it's very inspiring to those of us who have procrastinitis!

07-12-2005, 06:03 PM
Hey Sooz all you have to do is one painting a week for a year and you'll be in the nineties this time next July! Two a week by January, etc. Just break it down by the week and paint each chance you get. As you do more you will become more proficient and each painting will take less time. Happy Painting! BillF

You're right, of course, and since I didn't put a restriction on size or medium, that shouldn't be impossible. Are you still doing your little one a day sketches? Those were so cool and kept getting better and better, too!

07-12-2005, 06:08 PM
Hi all! :wave:

It has taken 2 days to read this thread and 2 more days to post. Thanks to all of you and your posts for giving me courage.

Goals for the next year:

Complete 2 pieces every week
(should help correct hoarding amongst other things)

Donna, thanks for the smile :).
Post away!
I've got some hoarding to correct myself. :rolleyes:

07-13-2005, 12:10 PM
Good Morning,

Thank you Sooz!

Bing, we must help our fellow hoarders. In fact, I will use $15 sheet of paper today, instead of saving it for some worthy effort. They all are worth the best effort and the best materials. How can we improve by using inferior materials or not using them at all. BTW, just like anything, once you start it's hard to stop. This can work either way. There will always be art supplies and art supply companies. Trust me, I am doing MORE than my part to keep them in business.

This is something I'll never forget. Three years ago I looked at a young girls art on the internet. It was a figure of a woman and beautiful, all in warm earthy tones. The young girl lived in Egypt and didn't have money for art supplies. She used different strengths of TEA on paper. This will always remind me that a pencil may be more than you need. And how very blessed I am, too.

So here is more of what I've been doing with my supplies. The larger one is 19x25 on Canson and the other is 25 wide on Canson.

07-13-2005, 12:44 PM
Diane, I really like the 1st one's sunlit area & the colors.

07-13-2005, 01:57 PM
My goal for this month is to get as much out of my art class as possible. I like the teacher. I came close for me to getting a whole painting done in 3 hrs. He had us do a complementary background washed with turpenoid. He'd like for us to finish these paintings for next week & do a watercolor wash background to bring with us. The 1st pic is the reference from my NM trip.
BTW, about the hoarding, I used some of my new Wallis for this even tho I didn't have any idea how it would turn out. It sure ate up my pastels. :crying: I better start a chart to help with replacement if I'm going to switch to Wallis.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Jul-2005/3341-Bluegateadobearch3WC.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Jul-2005/3341-GatewaytotheTrees.jpg

07-13-2005, 04:17 PM
Looks like you're having LOTS of fun, Tammy! Also sounds like you're taking a very productive class, as well. Who's the teacher?

07-13-2005, 05:37 PM
His name is Michael Gillaland. He's a local graphic artist for a job but pastel is his favorite medium.

07-13-2005, 06:15 PM
Is that there in Lubbock or are you still on vacation? As you can tell, I'm living vicariously through you guys who actually take vacations...lol.

07-13-2005, 06:22 PM
It's in Lubbock, I'm back from vacation. WAh!

07-13-2005, 06:45 PM
Boy, that was quick! It's amazing how time flies when you're having fun, innit? Sighh

Piper Ballou
07-13-2005, 07:39 PM
Tammy, I would love to take that class....love your painting, looks fresh and bright

I have been working on this somewhat for a while, mostly thinking about it. First I was given a really bad reference photo, actually had about 10 and they were not good. The dog has passed away so that leaves the option for new photos out.
It is for my son in law's sister, we live in a small town and do lots of family things together so I have to sorta finish it. I do not like it much and need to move on to something different. This is what I am thinking. I am not going to get paid for this (I know, should have set a price up front and it is kinda a long story) so I am thinking of tweaking it a little more, then having my husband fix what ever needs to be done in a photo shop and printing them a very nice copy and just giving it to them. I feel funny about doing that, but they do not want to pay to have it framed and this way they can put it in a simple frame.
In fact, been thinking of something, I have a lot of people that give me photos, think I am going to tell them what a painting would cost (okay that is a new goal) and if they do not want to pay that price and I really want to paint the animal then I may say that I will keep the orginal and they can have a print. What do you think?


07-13-2005, 09:11 PM
That might work, piper, but make sure you get some good source photos. This poor doggie sure looks sad! Maybe he knew he wasn't long for this world, poor thing? You captured his expression very well. I agree about relatives and friends just assuming you'll paint them portraits of pets for free or something...can't do too much of that or you won't have any time for your own pursuits!

Piper Ballou
07-13-2005, 10:11 PM
Sooz- The dog was really shy and worried about everything, think at least I have captured that in the painting.
and I learned my lesson about my paintings, when handed a photo I am going to ask if they want me to paint it and what the cost will be, and if they do not want to pay that price but I really like the photo, I will offer a print for them for using the photo...okay, guess that is an official goal now..LOL
I am off to work on a landscape now...going to have some fun

Piper Ballou
07-18-2005, 05:43 PM
Took me a while to find this thread, guess everyone has the summer blue's with the heat.
Well, I have done two things, first, I entered a calender contest with a local printing company with one of my paintings, actually, one could enter two but the lady I talked to took three of them so we shall see.
Second, finished a landscape, bellrock at SEdona...posted in soft pastels...take a look and tell me what you think. It about drove me crazy, but think I want to try another one.

07-19-2005, 12:51 AM
Lookit you go Piper - these look great!! :clap:

Well, we are planning a camping trip for the August long weekend (weekend after next - not sure if that is just Canada or if everywhere has it). I have been bugging eveyone I kow to find out where the most beautiful scenery is so I can do some painting. Guess we'll have to see what the weather is like.

And with that in mind...my immediate goal (outside of painitng, of course) is to work out a couple of modifications for my pastel box so it will stay nicely sorted.

07-19-2005, 01:30 AM
A nicely sorted pastel box? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

07-19-2005, 10:36 AM
Now, Sooz....some of us are more organized obsessed & have a semblence of order. :D
My teacher looked in my box for a dirty pastel to demo his ground up rice to clean it & he had a hard time finding one! lol

07-19-2005, 10:44 AM
LOL....well, leave it to YOU to be Ms. Cleanie! He coulda found plenty of dirty ones in my sketchbox, no problem! Actually, I enjoy taking a break to clean my pastels now and then cause it's almost like getting sparkly new ones. But alas, they never seem to stay clean for long!

07-20-2005, 09:54 AM
Everyone at class loved my painting from last week. I'm so excited it turned out so good. Now, this week's is another story. It's on watercolor paper with a watercolor underpainting. The texture is alot like the rough side of Canson. The beach scene I picked looked easy but isn't quite as much as I thought it would be. It'll be interesting to see how it comes out in the end. I don't really like all the little dimples in the paper that leave it so grainy looking. I chalk it up to a new experience even if I don't end up liking it. The class is pushing me to do things I wouldn't try before.

07-20-2005, 12:05 PM
Trying new things is cool! Sounds like it's fun, too. Does the underpainting at least keep the white paper from showing? That, in itself, would be a plus, I think.

Piper Ballou
07-20-2005, 04:09 PM
Tammy-I have never tried watercolor paper but might add it to the list of things I want to try. Since I followed Marsha Savage WIP's on trees I have tried underpainting and I like it. I used watercolors (a cheap set) but thought I was half way done with the painting once I tried it and Sooz it covered the entire paper...and it helped to direct me in the painting...and I will try it again....also, think I found a saguro that I am going to try too

07-21-2005, 10:12 AM
Our teacher just wanted us to do a wash that might have some interested bleeded areas in it he didn't want us to cover up. But if you do a heavier underpainting it would cover up better. This covered up the white but was kind of pale. It was different to work with than Belgian Mist. I kept picking up a value & it wouldn't do what I expected. I think I may like the Wallis with a complementary pastel underpainting washed with turpenoid the best. I'll have to try it mroe before I can be sure. I can't try it on white Wallis cause I don't have any, but neutral has it's advantages.
Our teacher also demonstrated using black spray paint for the dark areas to give a jump start. I feel almost like cheating when you do so much without pastel. lol If use something like that or watercolor underpainting, then it may be called a mixed media? Something to think about for competitions.
Piper, have at that saguaro! I'll be glad when I can get mine finished.

Bill Foehringer
07-21-2005, 06:30 PM
Elgin Library just confirmed a Jan 06 display for my artwork. This will be in the main foyer just to the left of the only staircase to the 2nd floor Main book collections. Almost everybody who uses the library passes this wall display area. Now what? Framing, business cards, Info sheet? What else? Besides paint more and paint better? LOL Bill

07-21-2005, 07:10 PM
Well, you have plenty of time to gather up some really good stuff, Bill! You might take a second and decide on a sort of theme? Local stuff always does well for this type of display. Maybe make yourself a list of stuff you've already done of local scenes and ones you can add over the next few months.

Bill Foehringer
07-22-2005, 01:05 PM
Good idea Sooz. Most of my stuff is local. Some might be from Northern Wisconsin if I get up there this summer and/or fall.
I would definitely want to have the four seasons represented as I am mostly a plein air painter at this time. I'll include some of the same or similar scenes painted during different seasons. Bill

07-22-2005, 09:26 PM
That could really be cool! Can't wait to see how you bring it all together for the show. Should be lots of fun work!

07-23-2005, 10:36 AM
Tammy- that sounds really cool- and Bill- congrads! What a great honor!
I should do more local things, but they have 'paved paradise and put up a parking lot :)"

07-23-2005, 05:06 PM
It's sort of late in the month for me to consider July goals. I did accomplish some previous goals in doing more on location starts, painting larger, loosening up slightly. I guess my goals for the remainder of this month is to finish up the several I have started, learn more about matting and framing--this will carry into August's goals as the Art Assoc. is having a framing and mat cutting workshop I am looking forward to. An ongoing goal is to get the house in order so I can liberate studio space. I'd like to complete a color chart of my pastels too so I can safely break them and still know what I have by comparing to the color chart--going to be time consuming and boring so will probably take it to the open studio day so I'll at least have company. Also want to go to at least one of our nude figure drawing sessions.

07-25-2005, 01:11 PM
learn more about matting and framing--this will carry into August's goals as the Art Assoc. is having a framing and mat cutting workshop I am looking forward to. TJ

TJ, check out the archival matting thread here inPastel Talk. Piper's husband Stan has been very very helpful with framing information.

Well, the body of work for the show in 8 days is rounding the corner to the finish line, whew! I've got 14 pix and two walls to fit all of the framed pix on. Not the 25-30 paintings I thought I'd have done...I had to realistically figure out last night what paintings I'd have to drop off since I am just about out of time. One I'm sad not to finish is the larger WoodStream I posted in Pastels Studio but it's well on it's way to a finish and I'll definitely finish it after this show. I used Adobe Illustrator to figure out the exact hanging placement...better to know beforehand than being surprised the day before and scrambling as to how to hang them all. Here's my layout, what a help...
Sandy, Laura, Mikki....thanks for your info I remember reading recently about shows!


07-26-2005, 03:15 PM
Bing, that's going to look really good, good luck. Thanks for the thread reference. Stan is great with framing. He gave me a personal lesson while I was at their house, and he framed a painting for me. I have just a few more strokes to finish it and then I will post it framed. The workshop will be all day and we will get lots of practice and go away with matted paintings so it should be good. The pastelist giving the workshop likes framing as well as she does painting so should be good. Her works always look great in the shows and she takes ribbons.

07-26-2005, 04:14 PM
And thanks to you, too, TJ, for your recent show info. I've forgotten a few more pastelists, I know.

07-26-2005, 04:18 PM
So odd that the month is almost over. Luckilly I didn't set very huge goals since I have had hardly any time to do anything. I did get in my one plein air piece and I may go out and spend a day this weekend painting en plein air. Beyond that I have been spending my time getting my studio set up and functional. It is just about there. My new easel should be here in a week or so and then it will be complete (for now). Then my goals will start going in a more career direction I think.

07-30-2005, 05:51 PM
With my studio set up now, I am happily getting dusty again :D I just cross posted my WDE for this week in the softies forum...