“The artist is always beginning. Any work of art which is not a beginning, an invention, a discovery is of little worth.” ~Ezra Pound
I am somewhat reassured by Ezra Pound's words. It seems I have been beginning a lot lately. Inventing and discovering, yes, that too. I have been asking myself the question what if? many times. The end result sometimes works but often doesn't. It's a process isn't it? And if the end result is not quite what I anticipated, I was having so much fun trying this and that in my sketchbook or on canvas that the final product is of little importance. At least for now.
I am still on holidays but I prepared this post before leaving for Philadelphia, or to be more precise, New Jersey. By the time you read this, I will have been to the shore and visited the Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, the Philadelphia Magic Gardens, and possibly Chanticleer in Wayne, Pennsylvania. So many possibilities....so little time. I know I will come home inspired by everything I have seen.
September is definitely a time for a new beginning and there are art challenges to prove this point. For example, for those of us who like to draw faces, there is the 29 faces in September challenge by Ayala Art. It might seem easy to draw 29 faces but not so much when there are many scheduled end of season activities on the calendar including a one-week trip away from home, an upcoming race weekend, and the garden produce to put away for winter.
I quickly realized that if I hope to have a total of 29 faces by the end of September, I would have to simplify my drawings. For the girl in the first sketch above, I used black and white and three other coloured Prismacolor pencils. But I should tell you I am already falling behind. I destroyed some monstrosities that I just couldn't stand seeing in my sketchbook.
For those artists who can draw and paint much more frequently, the 100 faces challenge is another great place to post portraits. All challenges are on Facebook as well as Instagram.
Admittedly, it is a way to be motivated to draw faces regularly. I find it so interesting to see all the various techniques artists use to sketch and paint. And for those of us who like things in small packages, and here, I AM talking about art, there is "#alittleart" on Instagram. Art work must be within 2.5 inches (see? Very small!) in width but the height is undetermined.
This girl with her dog is my one and only submission so far to the miniature art challenge. She is my first mini canvas and my first acrylic portrait.
If this is the kind of thing that motivates you, find a challenge and start posting your work. So far, I have found all the artists participating in these challenges very supportive. Any beginning is good!