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Go with It - Perspectives No. 360

Go With It

Perspectives No. 360

A Turn in the Road at Auvers, 1873, Paul Cezanne
A Turn in the Road at Auvers     1873     Paul Cezanne

   Making art is an unpredictable affair. We start with an idea and follow it until something happens which delights, intrigues, excites or simply interests us. Our ideas may not be of interest to anyone else, for all we know, but pursue them we must. Sooner or later, there will come that moment of discovering something new that makes us feel as if all the effort has been worth it. We think of this as inspiration, and as the word connotes, it seems to come from the realm of the spiritual rather than the temporal. This is the mysterious creative process of the brain.

   I’m at that uneasy point again where I am embarking on a project to create a new body of work. Many of you are probably familiar with this situation. The ideas for this new work have been brewing for the previous two years and the effort may well take a year or more of continuous work to achieve. I’m not sure how this will turn out, exactly, but that seems to be a part of the process that all artists must embrace to move forward. Because the new work will be a big departure from my usual method of working, there may be economic consequences such as the risk of losing established collectors and sales.

   My resolve is strengthened by reading art history and reminding myself that everyone who has achieved artistic growth has been here before me. When Picasso was painting his revolutionary Les Desmoiselles d’Avignon in 1907, neither his mistress nor his friends approved of it. He kept secretly working on it anyway, feeling that it was a necessary “exorcism” from his previous way of painting. He needed to evolve as an artist.*

   All artists can get stuck in familiar, comfortable ways of working, even when there is a little voice telling us to break free. If you are feeling stuck in your art, for whatever reason, listen to that little voice. It is your Muse, and she knows what you need to do. Try something different. Embrace the feeling of not knowing where you are headed. Create out of your heart and you cannot go wrong, even if it means ignoring all the other voices out there. This is what defines us.

* "Under the Hood of Creativity" by Anthony Brandt and David Eagleman, The Science of Creativity




Copyright Hulsey Trusty Designs, L.L.C. (except where noted). All rights reserved.
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A Primer on Night Painting - Nocturnes

Nocturnes - A Primer on Night Painting

Filled with inspirational examples by the masters of nightime painting, this little book is sure to fire up your creative energies. Never tried painting at night? We show you how it's done with a step-by-step-oil demo and a tale of night painting in the wilds of Rocky Mountain National Park. The Primer on Night Painting - Nocturnes is a 7 x 7" PDF download with 40 pages of text and images. It includes a gallery of paintings by masters of the nocturne, information to inspire and encourage you in your plein air nocturne painting, an illustrated step-by-step demo and tips for working in pastel and oil. Also available in a softcover edition. Check out the tools and other products that we use in our own art and travels in The Artist's Road Store. We only offer things for sale that we enthusiastically believe in.

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About Us

Photograph of John Hulsey and Ann Trusty in Glacier National Park
We are artists, authors and teachers with over 40 years of experience in painting the world's beautiful places. We created The Artist's Road in order to share our knowledge and experiences with you, and create a community of like-minded individuals.  You can learn more about us and see our original paintings by clicking on the links below.
About Ann
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We are also regular contributors to the Plein Air blog at Artist Daily.

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