Painting as a lifestyle choice. 1

First I would like to say that I removed all of my images from deviantArt. It was not where I wanted my artwork to be shown and their behavior to the artists was a little unsettling.

I just bought my name as a domain and will be working diligently on a website over the weekend (after a solid day of Final Fantasy XII though.) I have a couple of tutorials that should help me out this time around.

The past few months I have seriously been questioning my decision to be an artist. I could not remember why on Earth I would choose this profession. This week I have finally broken through that particular wall. The first chink in the armor was preparing for my exit interview. We were required to present our artwork to a gallery owner as well as a few teachers. I was a nervous wreck. I worried and practiced for two days straight, barely able to focus on anything else.I went over and over my speech both nights before falling asleep. A time normally reserved for making up intricate fictional stories. I tend to make myself sick with worry. While the artwork I was presenting did not necessarily represent who I am as an artist, during a practice session with a marvelous teacher, I rediscovered my passion for watercolor. (Go on Sharon, ask me which teacher.) I did pretty well on my presentation, but the highlight was that the teachers really had nothing to say because they looked at my paintings and thought, oh that’s a really nice painting. (Their words. I’m not being conceited.) Granted I would love to have breath-taking, stop the viewer in his or her tracks paintings, but for assignments I will take nice paintings. It’s much better than, “That looks like shit.”

However, one of the most rewarding comments I have ever received on a painting came today. It was from a teacher that I respect and admire. He is a teacher that I look to for affirmation that I’m not deluding myself and that I may actually make a living of this. That is, as long as I can deal with my depression and paint. He said, “Nobody paints the way you do.” I don’t know about any one else, but that’s the stuff I need to hear. Yes, it’s true, I need to hear that I am special. It’s the worst when you realized someone has already painted your idea or that you are not the best artist in the class anymore. After all, we were all the best artists in our high school.

Looking at the same painting for days and weeks at a time, I often lose my innocence of the painting. I become jaded and only see the flaws. I see the painting as dull and over done. It takes stepping away from the painting to view it with fresh eyes. Or it takes seeing someone that I really respect getting excited about it.

I am ready to take a break from the painting aspect of being an artist and to delve into the less creative side. I am very excited to spend the summer reading about my favorite artists, reading about how to sell myself, how to get public work etc. I am excited to get my website up and to print out business cards and new promotional material. I know that when I get to deal with the business end of things I will really feel like a professional. When I get to set up my office and organize my files I will know that I am running a business. It will give my mind a chance to focus on technical, left brain stuff and although I will be sketching, painting and messing around, it will give my right brain a chance to relax and recoup from the three year boot-camp that is art school.

About Elisha

Elisha Dasenbrock is an award winning, international watercolor artist. She paints with a limited palette on claybord. Dasenbrock graduated from the American Academy of Art in 2009 and has been painting professionally ever since.

One thought on “Painting as a lifestyle choice.

Comments are closed.