Ben has wondered if we should try to send me to an MFA program somewhere. Of course it would be a joy for me — I am eager to get better and I think those can be helpful in making connections as well as perhaps growing more confidence about reaching out to galleries, grants, etc. But they are also expensive (and I already have a graduate degree I paid for and am not using, so worried about doing that again :-)). Plus, it’s demands would require that I give up a lot the time and attention I currently give to our kids, my husband, my community, my health (already skimped on too much!). I haven’t ruled it out forever, but it seems like I should wait a few years and then see if it still seems important.
But the conversation reminded me that there’s a lot of great learning I can do here. So much of learning is doing — so I need to keep painting. But I can keep challenging my painting by exposing myself to work by other great painters. I got a bunch of art-related books for my birthday — mostly around 20th century women and figure painters, so a great way to broaden my knowledge.
More directly in terms of skill development I picked up and am re-reading Richard Schmid’s Alla Prima II, an in-depth book by a quite-accomplished painter and teacher. It’s amazing what he was able to see in a subject and so beautifully represent on the canvas. I hope I can practice his ideas — so, as if under his tutelage — and keep energized to push myself and further my skills.
Not much time in the studio this week due to various obligations in the rest of my life. Still, yesterday, I came in a for a few hours to get started on a commission from a friend…
Two veery thrushes… each 6″ x 6″ oil on panel.