I’m learning a painter should strive to be true to himself or herself.
I say this because I am always in the learning mode, and by that I mean I am always looking at, studying, reading up on, or trying out what other painters do or say you should do, supposedly to be a successful painter such as themselves.
At some point, however, and I’m not saying I have reached that point just yet, a painter must take a stand with his or her style, technique, palette, way of doing things, or whatever.
In a sort of Catch-22 way, a painter must be what he or she must be. If a painter studies and mimics and paints just like another painter, that’s all well and good. But at some point shouldn’t they say enough is enough? When have they relegated their own talent to nothing but a fond memory because they want to paint like Paul Klee or Clyfford Still or Grant Wood or whomever?
I doubt Picasso or Sargent ever gave many lessons.
So, when is your style, your style? When is your technique, your technique? When is your palette, your palette? You get the picture.
Stardom or even acknowledgment in painting is rare and seldom for almost every painter.
But to tie this up in a neat bow, is that what we painters are looking for—acclaim and celebrity? I like to think not, but it’s usually back there somewhere as I paint—“will this be the one that breaks out for me and achieves acceptance (stardom!) on a broad scale?”
What if it is or if it is not? Does it matter? Or can I just be true to myself and my paintings?