Wednesday, May 27

Just Look at Some of Your Old Paintings to See How Far You've Come

Pink Adobes
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
20 x 16 in/50.8 x 40.6 cm
Copyright Byrne Smith 2008
Every once in a while I can feel a spell of artist slump coming on. Not sure if it's boredom, or if that's what happens before a growth spurt; I'm hoping it's the latter.

I recently began to feel a slump coming on. I know intellectually it's only temporary and that I'll snap out of it, but that doesn't help much when it's happening.

Rather than feeling sorry for myself, I decided to go through all the completed paintings I still have on hand. Those are euphemistically referred to as the "collection of the artist," which really means not only could you not sell them, you couldn't even give them away. (As I said I felt a slump coming on.)

I have a good many in my "collection of the artist." They are more or less stored by the year I completed them. I began to rifle through them, taking a second or two to view each one, and giving some old favorites as much as ten seconds.

What I began to realize was that I actually have gotten better at my painting, especially when compared to those I did going on seven years ago now. That made me feel much better about all the hard work I have put in over the years. My artist slump began to recede.

Today's image was one of the first acrylic paintings I did back in 2008. I'll admit, it's horrible, but at the time I thought differently. Finally, by looking at this old painting, I can tell how far I've come, and I feel more confident.

So, the moral of today's blog is: just look at some of your old paintings to see how far you've come.

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