One small step, one giant leap

Even though the last few paintings went well, I was finding them somewhat stressful and not-fun to do. I’d been feeling this way for quite a while but it was getting to a point where I was seriously considering if I should just give up painting and find something else to do that I’d actually enjoy.

I guess my muse was listening, because I was suddenly struck with the urge to just paint. Not draw, not plan, not stress about the result, but just grab some paints and a reference image and just paint it using whatever colours I wanted, free from giving a damn how it turned out, if there was a likeness, and so on. I also clearly knew I needed to use acrylics, so that I could layer colours however I wanted thanks to their opacity.

I have a sketchbook lying around that I’ve had for years, made from recycled paper so the pages are brown, and while it’s fairly lightweight paper, it’s heavy enough for acrylics.

So I grabbed a reference image from Sktchy, picked out a small selection of colours that I thought would work, and just went for it.

It’s fair to say that I was surprised by the end result. It’s lively, expressive and the likeness is actually fairly good. But far more importantly, I had an absolute ball painting it!

What does this mean? I have no idea. I’ve always loved this painting style but didn’t think I could do it. Perhaps I’ve been trying too hard … ?

Portrait of Gigi from Sktchy, acrylics on paper, A4

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