My friendly neighborhood tire store fixed my flat (see previous) and gave me a complimentary calendar as well. Every month has a scenic photo and a motivational thought in fancy writing.
While looking through the wise words I was thinking about my lack of success in my studies of Sumi-e painting. I’d gone from diligently painting an hour or so almost every day for weeks, to total procrastination. Things did not look good.
“It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop.” Confucius--- Was one calendar quote.
Was walking away from my attempt at oriental style painting going to be like quitting music lessons—something to regret years later?
Another month’s inspiration was: “Act as if it were impossible to fail.” Dorothy Brande And another: “Admire those who attempt things even if they fail.” Seneca
I considered how I really hate doing repetitive crafts. Others can turn out loads of handwork and needlework with similar designs, all beautiful. I, on the other hand, went bonkers when I had to crochet two hot pads that looked the same. Trying to paint bamboo leaves and birdies over and over was really getting under my skin.
Another deep thought: “When you have faults do not fear to abandon them.” Confucius
Abandon them—hmmmm. Maybe putting away the bamboo brushes and rice paper wasn’t failing, but just quitting while I was ahead. I decided life is too short to waste on looking for chi.
Chi? Chi? I don’t need no steenking Chi. Most artists are considered unbalanced anyway. I stashed the black and white and got out my Arches watercolor paper and my sable brushes. In one afternoon I turned out a painting of the National Elk Refuge just out of Jackson, Wyoming—the piece you now see incorporated into my new blog header. Actual size is 30 inches wide. If you look closely you can see the elk herd.
Granted all the studying of brush work has improved my painting ability. It even helped my handwriting.
I seem to do my best work on paper towels.
(No pressure to perform, I guess)
The hours spent weren’t totally wasted. And I have lots of ink and newsprint so the kids and I can have great fun together. Time for me to move on.