Not even artist get it right the first time. Just know that whatsoever you do, you should not expect perfection. Perfection is overrated. Seriously, nobody likes to be around someone who is always perfect—it makes people nervous. Or at least it makes me personally nervous—I like to be able to make a few mistakes in the process of getting something done. That is how I learn. Thomas Edison said, “Discontent is the first necessity of progress.” So as I paint, I usually create some versions that involve discontent. It is all part of the process though. That’s how one figures it out. Or as I said before, “I like to be able to make a few mistakes in the process.” “Don’t give up when at first you don’t succeed.” Here is some of my “process” for “Scooter,” a Dogs for the Deaf dog in training.
This is just study of depth of color, shape and composition. This painting took about 15 minutes.
Still not successful. I tried to work in orange, yellow, red combo, but it didn’t work. At least I like the composition. Many people think an artist just whips out a sketch or painting, but it is not true for me. Most artists have to practice many hours to create what pleases the eye. I personally have to work for what I want. I am almost embarrassed to post my mistakes, but I want to encourage people to try. Discontent creates progress.
Finally, I am liking Scooter. The third time is a charm. Well at least I am happy with the third try. Scooter is a “Dogs for the Deaf” dog in training. Check out Dogs for the Deaf. It is a great non-profit that trains Dogs for the Deaf and rescues dogs from around the Northwest and California. Dogs for the Deaf resides in Central Point, Oregon. Central Point, Oregon is about 5 miles away from Jacksonville where I live. Dogs for the Deaf is one of my favorite local charities (along with Habitat for Humanity). Recently, I answered a call for local artists to donate to their cause. I am blessed to be able to donate two paintings so far. “Topher” and “Scooter” will be donated to Dogs for the Deaf for their promotional use. You may also purchase prints of these two dogs on my Zazzle website: http://www.zazzle.com/hollyherick. (prints coming soon) But, if you purchase the cards (eventually—there will be a set of three to five cards) through Dogs for the Deaf, the proceeds will go towards a great cause—Dogs for the Deaf.
Here is the process of “Scooter.”
After I got a composition that I liked, I used my art table like a light box to trace the layout. I actually put my light under my sketch—under the glass table so I could sketch (like using a light box). Maybe this shows in the photo.
Then I started to under paint the tones of blue.
A little more tone and shadow.
Looking at my computer and watercolor.
Almost final painting. “Scooter”
I hope this maybe encourages someone to try. Try something even if maybe you are not sure of what the process is. Especially if you can help someone else, or some organization in the process. It will make you feel good, even if you fail the first couple of times…Or maybe even more if you fail at first…