Misplaced Concerns

Annual Meeting of the "What's Wrong With Watercolor Society (WWWWS)

As I travel around the country conducting workshops I too often hear people discussing “the politics of painting”.  These subjects are generally about ideas that have very little to do with making art, rather they are personally held beliefs that eat up more time and energy than they deserve.  Subjects like opaque vs. transparent, to use or not use black or white pigments, glass vs. no glass, that galleries have a prejudice against watercolor, and second guessing judges as to why they chose “those” paintings for awards. I am never quite sure what these conversations are about and to what end. I do know that our energies would be better used in the  making art rather than  talking about someone else makes their art. In college I remember being an expert at procrastination.  I would do almost anything to avoid the scary prospect of coming face to face with that white canvas or even worse that half finished canvas. Rather than paint I one time helped a friend put a new transmission in a 1956 Chevy—I had and have no interest in working on cars, but anything to keep from painting. I guess most of us want to be right.  There are those who would prefer arguing a point with another person over doing the lonely job of introspection required in the making of art.


  • Susan baer

    Dec 29, 2011 at 11:22 am Reply

    You are so right! I am weary of workshop artists more concerned about discussing the materials rather than the mental process of creating art. Talk is easy, work is not. It is called art WORK for a reason. Get in there and fight! Some times we win the battle with the materials what ever they are, but we have to step into the fray and give it our best shot. Some great artist said “It is a poor artist who blames the materials”.

    Having ranted on that…I also am a victim of procrastination when starting a work at my own studio. Gee, maybe I should clean out this area or whatever. Yep. We all do it from time to time.

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