I started this blog on January 7, 2014. The first post was pretty short. The gist of it was be more creative and productive in 2014. Which, incidentally, is on my 2015 New Year’s resolution list. The post also introduced a painting project I started: the Queen series (no, not that Queen). Today is January 8, 2015 so it’s a good time to review the year.
First, the Queen paintings: I started two of the paintings and finished another in Photoshop (which I have in my shop). I think the issue with these paintings is there wasn’t a good direction. I had the barest of concepts — mostly centered around the honeycomb/hexagonal pattern and the color gold. There wasn’t a story or explanation behind it that I could work from.
Then there was the fowl portraits. I found an old thumbnail I’d made for these. It wasn’t until later that I realized I’d already painted one of them before. Again, another unfinished project. Like the Queen paintings there’s no story behind it: I like birds, chickens are cool, this particular pheasant looks pretty. That was it. That was the idea…
Next up was Little Red, the first finished work of 2014. Little Red was based on a clearly defined concept unlike the previous paintings. There were predefined elements from the story I could work with. I had a lot of fun doing the graphite drawing for this. I even made a process video of it. I started listening to new (new to me) podcasts while working. Music and videos/movies are too distracting.
Then I had an idea for Doctor Who fanart. Don’t Blink also gave me a reason to work in Illustrator and Photoshop a little more. Although I did have to deal with some technical issues before I could work on it. It’s difficult to use Photoshop when you can’t open Photoshop.
And the last painting of the year was One for sorrow… which I made for a juried show about crows. It was right up my alley since I like birds so much. I really stuck to my process and did a lot of brainstorming in the preparation. I had a clear direction for the painting (and a deadline) which I feel contributed to actually finishing the painting. And it was great to work with watercolor again.
There was some more art through the year (patterns and demos for the painting class I taught). Overall, I didn’t make a lot of art this year. But it was a big improvement over 2010-2013. I was in a big, unmotivated slump for three years. I hope to improve even more going into 2015. I’ll continue to track my progress on this blog.