I subscribe to About.com’s Painting newsletter run by Marion Boddy-Evans.  Today it led me to a post on What Hurtful Things Have People Said When Commenting on a Painting? I read a few and discovered that while I didn’t have the same experiences I had shared some of the same feelings.

When I started out six years ago I wanted everyone (!) I came across to comment on my work. It was new to me, I was finding my way and thought that family, friends, acquaintances and online friends were all in a position to help. Sometimes it was frustrating because no one wanted to put me down or be harsh to a newbie. Sometimes they liked the very things that I didn’t.  I also learnt to my dismay that positive comments affected me too.  I’d get stuck, too timid to add anything more in case I messed it up!
netra - another attempt

Netra – another attempt – pen & ink – based on a beautiful photograph taken by Sudarshan used with permission.   An earlier attempt made in 2005 using the same reference.

But that was then.  I still love to hear from people but what I take from it now and how it affects me is different.  It’s more about whether they like the piece and not what they find right or wrong with it.   When I see a painting or a movie or a dress I form an opinion about it.  We all have opinions.  And sometimes mine don’t match with the way others around me think.  It doesn’t upset them or me that our views are different.  And with that in mind  I hear what people have to say about my work as their opinion.  Sometimes, good or bad, it matches mine and sometimes it doesn’t.

pen & ink

pen & ink –  earlier sketches and a painting made last year – Lost in though


Out of the Frame

I have been busier painting these last few weeks than in quite a while.  The first is a secret online project for which I have a deadline of Jan 31st and will be able to blog about only mid Feb.   Decided to also begin work on portraits something that I had been going slow on last year but these really help me jump back in.  I’m thrilled to be painting again but it is still a daily struggle to get myself in to the studio.   I’m hoping that that will change in the coming weeks.

Likeness is eluding me mostly with the fineness of the features of my friend.  I hope that in the end it will resemble her more closely.  I have used her as a subject in earlier sketches and a painting made early last year – Lost in thought.  I’m back to using oils and so each of these is going to take me longer to finish.  I’m looking to slow down a bit and this medium is going to help me do just that.  I will also begin work on portraits of people I do not know as I have much more freedom then to play around with working on getting form over likeness.    I aim to start working on some still life pieces too as soon as i’ve created more space in my studio.

a layer of paint

I miss the daily exchange and encouragement with Smita about what we were working on.  Part of an expat existence, leaving or getting left behind.  I’m happy to hear that she is continuing to paint in Delhi despite a full time job and is currently dabbling in soft pastels.

Like in the past, I will be updating the wip’s on this page to track progress and the final image will be posted on Maya.

WIP’s of Out of the Frame – 12″ X 16″  oil on canvas panel

sketchdrawing - firstdrawing - almost donea layer of paint

Year end challenge

Happy New Year!   I havent been painting regularly and hence not been blogging either.  I hope to change all that this year.

I’ve known for a while now that I needed another jump start and decided to take a leap by signing up for Karin Jurick’s year end portrait challenge.  Read more about it on her blog.

Karin Jurick Portrait Challenge 2009

I didn’t get the likeness I was looking for ( Sorry Andrea! ) but I’m hoping it will help me continue with painting regularly in 2010 : )   One thing that this exercise reinforced is the fact that I definitely need to go slow in the early stages : )  It’s been fun though.  And if you paint too I recommend you sign up for Karin’s regular challenges.

It’s been great fun heading off to Karin‘s Different Strokes from Different Folks blog to check out the entries as she was posting them.  A lot of hard work on her part through the year but this challenge required all of that and more right through the holiday season as there were 180 participants!!   Thank you Karin for doing this again.

8″ X 8″ Acrylic on a linen canvas panel.