I am writing this from a motel room in Helena, Montana. I am here because I am a guest artist this year in the Western Rendezvous of Art. The painting above is my piece in the show. I had a dreadful flight here, That went on for two days but I arrived last night so tired I was staggering. Now my days and nights are reversed it is after midnight and I just woke up. I love to travel and do it a lot, but sometimes it is disorienting. Hotel rooms are a great place to write blog posts, I have no distractions and no studio in which to work. As you all know, if I am awake I am working.
I think I will tackle a couple of the questions from recent comments, comments are often the impetus for good blog posts. I was asked several times about my formula for Pornstar Pink. I use
quinacridone red and pyrrole orange and flake white. Willamsburg's Persian Rose is very close but theirs is made with quinacridone violet and zinc white, I think. My Pornstar Pink is a little more electric pink, but if you want to try this color that is what you should buy.
I also received this comment;
Thanks Stape, but must staunchly disagree with you on your art and do nothing else philosophy. I have been a health practitioner for 30 years--get balanced man!!, exercise, eat well, relax, etc. I was a workaholic, going into an early grave. Terrible cholesterol, prediabetic, etc. and I quit, began eating well and exercising and taking time off. Hope this view gets across that you don't have to kill yourself to be a successful artist. Paint 5 hours a day, do yoga, meditate, take a vacation, have a balanced life and be successful artist too. Sorry, just my point of view.
Does it seem a little ludicrous to you as a health care professional to advise a successful artist on how to be one? For many, even most people that is sound advice. But there is a level of performance and ability that cannot be achieved with that level of commitment. It all depends on what you want from your art. This is incidentally true of most of life's endeavors not just painting.If you want your art to be something that you do for a fuller life or are gainfully employed elsewhere that sounds like a good plan. BUT if you want to play in the major leagues, five hours a day won't take you there. The players at that level work incessantly and you won't operate at that level working part time. If you are in your twenties and have no children and no mortgage as I did, it is possible to concentrate on getting your "chops" together. Real application at this age when learning is easier and distractions are fewer will build a foundation that allows you to concentrate more on what you are trying to say later, rather than the mechanics of saying it.
Retired people who take up painting never catch up with those who have spent a lifetime honing their craft. I know that sounds hard but I believe it to be true and not heard very often in the popular art press. If you take up painting late in life and work at it only part time you may become a strong amateur painter, but you will not become a real case hardened pro. You might even put together a successful art business, but there is a level of ability that is closed to you. If you think about it I am sure you can summon up a list of the names of those who play in the upper brackets.
I am thinking about hiring someone to do yoga for me. My body is only a shopping cart I push my mind around in. I did drop 45 pounds since May though.
I was advising a friend recently, as I mentor a few people. I recommended that they pick a favorite painter, for them it was Willard Metcalf, but it could have been almost any painter who was first rate and then learn to work in that artist's style. This is a step beyond copying a painting by that artist (which is a good learning tool also) because it makes you really understand how an artist thought. I suggested that they go to a location and try to make a Willard Metcalf out of it. My intention was not they they become an imitator of Metcalf but that they thoroughly examine one way, a good way, of doing things. That gives them a sort of baseline. When confronted with a painting problem they will know at least one approach to solving it.