ick & ugly

Friday, May 17, 2013

layer 3 the ick & the ugly of painting (layer 1 & 2), or at least of this kind of bold, brave intuitive painting ... it's so hard.

We have to continually be jumping off cliffs 
and developing our wings on the way down.
Kurt Vonnegut

I'll call this the ick phase, the phase that comes directly after the ugly phase, it's most definitely the phase where you're contemplating getting that big jumbo jar of gesso out pronto & painting the ick away with goopy thick fresh whiteness but ... experience has taught me that ick & ugly can actually become stunning & gaspingly beautiful uh huh !... if you hang in there which is the very hard part. I'm not sayin' it's gonna happen here but I do know many, many, many (that's 3 many's and an often !) paintings or collages that I've been ready to crumple, rip up and/or paint over have eventual morphed into favourites of mine because I did stick with them - blew by the ick & ugly, turned my brain off, shut down my expectations & tried to have fun, to relax - it is the only way that you become better as an artist, I know this for sure. This my friends is a true fact.

I'm currently taking Mati Rose's Daring Adventures in Paint (I got in at the fabulous introductory price of $99. couldn't pass such a deal up) + I'm just about to redo Flora Bowley's amazing e-course (once you do the course live you have an amazingly long time period (weeks & weeks) of course material access - yeh ! Flora & Beth. The painting above, in progress, is a 10"x10" wooden canvas board, a surface I love but I've learned that to really have an easier time being loose, brave, bold & intuitive a much larger surface is best - 30"x30" or larger. That might be the problem with this painting - it's just too darn small.

Have you been thinking you'd love to learn to paint ? Flora's latest course begins May 27th and it's ah-mazing.

You can't use up creativity. 
The more you use, the more you have.
Maya Angelou


  1. OHMY the ick and the ugly. I have a few, more than a few, after deciding to try my hand at painting leavingmy rug hooking for a bit...read about flora bowley on your blog and watched her amazing video, my studio partner and I tried our hand at intuitive painting, SO MUCH FUN, now bakc to ick and ugly and trying to be kind to my unfinished paintings. Thanks Susan, will leave the lid on my gesso for now!


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