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When I first started taking classes for watercolor painting the instructor emphasized how, given enough time, we would all find our own styles. As it turns out, when you're just learning to paint, you typically find an artist you like and you try to copy their work. Yes, you do. But let's be honest here, when you're just beginning you don't know anything and there is no way you will ever create someone else's work exactly. However, that being said, what will happen is you'll create your own picture and you'll get inspired. You'll find what you like about it and what you don't. You'll discover the materials you like using and that may have nothing to do with the endless (and costly) supply list your instructor had you buy before class. You might find your favorite colors. You might learn you like a certain brush stroke. So much to learn in just a few simple painting exercises.
I moved on to acrylic pretty quickly after working with watercolor. I cannot tell you how exciting, fulfilling, and frustrating learning acrylic painting has been. I am self-taught so it took a lot of research and a huge amount of practice every single little step of the way. There were times I wondered why I was even doing this! Why did I pay all this money for supplies? Why on earth did I even think I could do this?
Oh, but the joy. The sheer joy of painting with paints that feel like frosting. And, the colors! Have you seen those colors?!! The sheer absorbency of time of which an entire day can go by in just a second. And, so, my passion grew.
I kept at it. I painted almost every day, even if only for an hour. I began to love my work, found the materials I gravitated to the most, found the paints I loved, and absolutely fell in love with the prospect of endless techniques to try. But, that elusive 'style' of my very own? Well, how frustrating it was to know it was out there but not completely seeing it…..yet.
It took a while but I can say, without a doubt, I have found my style. And, boys and girls, I LOVE it.
Trust someone who’s been there. You will eventually find your own style. And, you’ll know it when you see (oops, I mean feel) it. Don’t put pressure on yourself. Try to relax and take it painting by painting. It could take months or years but it’ll happen. And, when it does, watch out! You’ll be unstoppable.
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