Thursday, November 18, 2010

Having faith

When you work with watercolors, you have to practice a great deal of faith.

And hope.

It doesn't matter how the painting eventually works out. During the process of creation they all look terrible. Terrible enough that as the artist, I despair and have to resist the impulse to tear them up and throw them out. I fight the urge to give up on a painting with two thoughts:

  • no matter what, it will be good practice (practical)

  • maybe it will turn out after all (hopeful)
Both of these paintings are perfect examples of this process. They both looked absolutely terrible through most of their creation. I had to have a little faith, a little hope, and a lot of perseverance.

They are both inspired by the Centennial Trail. I loved the grain and the colors in this downed tree, with the leaves as a beautiful contrast.

Since I first started running along the trail in the spring, these purple flower weeds were everywhere. They grew like, well, weeds! I'm sure that they are universally hated because of that. I contemplated painting them many times but never deemed them quite worthy of my attention. Yes, the spikey flowers were pretty, but the plant wasn't really particularly eye catching.

So what changed my mind? Their sheer perseverance. When we walked the trail recently, they were still tenaciously blooming, the last hold outs of summer color. So I changed my mind and decided they were worthy after all.

I admire perseverance.


  1. End of a Season might be my new favorite!

  2. Thank you! I really like it too. I'm impressed you could figure out its title.