Artist's Blog

Why Paint?

Aerobic Exercise! Mental Challenges! Emotional Expression! Social Engagement!
What else besides painting can give you all of these experiences at once. Nothing! There is nothing like painting. It can bring to your life all of the benefits of exercise, mental challenges, emotional expression and an increased social circle.
 Painting is good for what ails you. 
I paint every day. I stand at an easel for hours and don’t feel pain or even hunger. Actually, painting is good for a diet. Where else can you stand for hours and not think about your aching back or your bum knee. Painting takes your mind off of yourself and helps you get lost into something beautiful.
I solve problems when I paint. I examine my painting for focus and balance, values, rhythm, color harmony etc. If a painting has gone off track, I have to figure out why and how to fix it. I hold my painting up to a mirror or snap a photo of the work in progress. Somehow seeing a painting in the mirror or through the lens of a camera helps me “see” my work more critically. I guess it is an exaggerated way of “Stepping Back.” Strengths and weaknesses are revealed when you step back. I love the analysis and critique process that is an integral part of painting.
When painting a landscape or still life, I look for beauty or mystery in the scene before me. I try to figure out what I want the viewer to feel or understand about the scene I am painting. In abstract art, I find the meaning as the design develops. I am an optimistic person and my paintings are pretty upbeat. There is nothing scary in them. Many artists convey strong emotional messages through their art. 
Through painting I have made many friends. My social circle has enlarged to include people that I never would have met without painting. Through classes and art clubs, I have met quite a few characters. I also paint regularly with friends. We share stories and learn from each other. One of the best things is having another artist to look at your work. I began teaching painting to three friends a few years ago. As I plan my lessons, I have to examine my own painting practices and nail down some of the concepts that underpin painting. Its been good for my art to teach.

Let me assure you that everyone can paint. There are few that can paint like “The Masters,” but those of us that just try, get all the same benefits of painting: exercise, mental puzzles, an emotional outlet and new friends.
So grab a friend or two and go paint!
Remember it takes two artists to paint a picture. One to paint the picture and the other artist to tell the painter when to stop!