Back to the Drawing Board

Graphite Horse Drawing by Sue Steiner

After a little break for Christmas and New Years I am ready to get back to work.  Since I got my studio at Second April Art Galerie about 1 1/2 yrs ago I have been trying different approaches on how to divide up my time between working at my studio and working from home.  I tried dividing my supplies between home and studio but invariably I would leave something at the wrong place.  There are lots of supplies that go along with painting!  Then I decided I would do one medium at home (Oils) and have the other mediums (watercolors, pastels, graphite, acrylics) at the studio.  But that wasn't quite right either because I ended up carrying wet oil paintings back and forth.  I much prefer oil painting to anything else. 

So I am back to the drawing board literally and figuratively.   I received a drawing table for Christmas.  So what I am  going to do now is set my drawing table up here at home.  I will keep all my oil and acrylic painting materials at my studio.  Drawing supplies along with the watercolors and pastels will come back home.   As I divide my supplies I am reminded how the different mediums have different effects on me while creating.  (They are all positive by the way!!) 

Maybe it can be looked at like this.  Many artists talk about 'getting into the zone' while creating artwork which can be described as getting so wrapped up in what you are doing that you lose track of time and things going on around you.  Different mediums take me deeper into the 'zone' than others.   I joked around on my facebook status this past week that I was going thru painting withdrawal because I hadn't painted for 6 days.   In many ways it does feel like withdrawal and  maybe its because of the 'in the zone' feelings.  So it should be no surprise that oil painting takes me into the deep end of 'the zone'!  Acrylics can do it too but the rich, buttery consistency of the oil paint and the fun of blending colors on the canvas can be so invigorating and mesmerzing!

On the other end of the spectrum for me is graphite.  I find drawing to be very relaxing and almost mindless.  Drawing is great when I am feeling worried or  obsessed.  I think of it as the OCD medium because you can go over and over minute details if you want.  Over and over, with layers and marks all the while thinking in black and white and shades of grey.  Isn't that alot like worry?? 

I like to draw while I do something else too.  Again drawing is the good twin of the evil twin worry which is carried around with a person.  Just like worry if it is put down it is easy to pick back up.  Down, up, down up, down up right to the same spot to chew on!  When I paint I do not want to put it down.  I do not want to be disturbed!  I want to drive deep into that pool of right-brain- ness and not come up for air for hours!   If drawing is like a good worry, oil painting is like daydreaming.  You float from one idea to another just like you do with choosing colors. You grab ahold of an idea and then bump it against another.  Sometimes they do the expected but sometimes they colide in these wonderful surprises that take you on this lovely journey! 

Pastels and watercolor fall in the middle.  The order would go like this: oils, acrylics, watercolor, pastels, graphite.   Mixed media is just that... mixed! 

Stop by to see artwork in all the mediums mentioned above.  I now have a new feature on my web site and can offer print on demand prints on many of my paintings.  I also have a shopping cart feature so selected paintings can be purchased in this way too.  Of course I am doing pet commissions as well although I offer them only in oils for canvas size up to 16 x 20 and acrylics for anything over that. 

take care and here's hoping for you to get in your zone in the way that works best for you!

animal and equine artist
pet and horse paintings in oils and acrylics


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