Guided Creation

by Erin

  • Explore someplace new
  • Be inspired
  • Read a classic
  • Try a new recipe
  • (Re)connect
  • Get selfishly creative (project 3 of 12)

Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do. -Edgar Degas

wine and canvas

Note: the painting is upside down so that I could paint the bottom of the canvas. Daffodils do not grow naturally in such a direction.

My next venture into “selfish creativity” was more selfish than creative. I took a weekday night off from putting Kid down for bed and went to Wine and Canvas for some guided painting.

I used to draw a lot in high school and have dabbled in chalk, pastels, and watercolor. Actual painting kind of intimidated me. Color mixing and brushstrokes seemed foreign to me. That’s not to say that there wasn’t an interest. This year’s resolution seemed like a good excuse to try out this painting thing and Wine and Canvas was a cheap introduction – just an artist walking you through the process of recreating a painting.

I have to say, whether it was the artist’s instruction or the nature of the piece, once I got into the painting, it wasn’t that intimidating. Granted, I know this was not at all the same as art school but for someone looking to simply create and maybe decorate a wall, it would do. It gave me a sense of how overpowering certain colors can be when you mix them into others. It gave me some ideas of how to use brushes in different ways. It built some confidence.

As for creativity…despite many of us following the artist’s directions it is amazing how different each piece turned out. In most cases, I assume that was all happy accident rather than deliberate decision making. I attempted to deviate from the artist a bit: I made my background more green to match my house; I experimented with a really dry brush to make splotchy patches in my background; I used the wood end of a paintbrush to carve in some more background texture.  But as for the flower itself, it is exactly my interpretation of step-by-step instruction.

So am I a painter? No way. Do I feel like I could buy a canvas and paint something aesthetically pleasing? Maybe with more practice and a sense of experimentation without judgement. Perhaps later in the year I will try something on my own.

Have you ever done one of these “paint with a  group” sessions? What did you think? How did it go?