Is There Such a Thing as Painter’s Block?

Maybe I need to be the inspiration I am waiting for. There’s a half-painted landscape on my easel and a million different paintings floating around inside my brain, but nothing wants to become paint on canvas (or even paint on paper). I’m beginning to think that lack of inspiration is becoming an excuse to not try any more. I need to make it happen instead of waiting for it to happen. I need to be OK with sketching and making mistakes. Everything does not have to be a masterpiece, It just need to be another step in the journey. I need to keep working in order to grow. It’s officially time to push myself! Wish me luck.



I love to look at the work of others! I keep them “organized” in my browser. In other words, I keep every new artist I find whose work I want to remember in an open tab in my browser…not a real efficient method! So, here’s the new plan: I’m going to share them here. That way I will have easy access to them, my browser will be manageable again, and others will get to see some amazing work and share it with me.

Lovely portrait by Kate Long Stevenson:

Don’t Bother Asking by Scott Bergey:

Some fun animal drawings by Valerie Davide:

Thoughts from a figure model:

Drawing Life by Fred Hatt:

Landscape Inspiration

I painted my first landscape in (just guessing here) about 20 years the other day. I was quite surprised how much I enjoyed it! If you missed my previous post, here it is:

Lunch Break, Acrylic on paper, 2012

Since then, I have been planning my next. I never go anywhere without my iPhone. Happily, it takes a decent snapshot, so I use it to snap shots everywhere I go. Usually I’m looking for wildlife, but since my newly discovered desire to paint more landscapes, I’ve been using it to capture skies and rivers and light through the leaves.

The other day, I took a trip into Bucks County PA. This area of the state is one of the most beautiful in the country! I grabbed a few shots for inspiration, but definitely need to go back for a longer visit! Here’s some of what I saw…

I haven’t Used Pastels Since College!

I completely forgot how fun pastels are to work with! My daughter asked me to teach her to draw with pastels, so I dug out my old supply from (how long ago was it it) many.many years ago when I was in art school. It took a few minutes but I quickly remembered how much I loved drawing with them! Here are the fruits of my “labors.”

Luke Loves the Window, Pastel on paper, 9″ x 11″, 2012

Scribbles, Pastel on paper, 9″ x 11″, 2012

My Baby

Picking Flowers, Acrylic on canvas, 9" x 12", 2012

Picking Flowers, Acrylic on canvas, 9" x 12", 2012

As I said before, I have trouble with portraits. Usually, I can do kids pretty well, as long as I am working with watercolors, but today, I pulled out the acrylics at gave painting a portrait of my daughter a shot. My plan was to try something sort of abstract or expressionistic, but somehow this image wanted to be relatively realistic. It’s not quite as soft as I wanted it, but then again, she is getting bigger and isn’t all chubby and baby-faced any more.

Party in the Wolf Den

I started this painting before I went to see the Van Gogh exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I finished it yesterday. I think (hope) that the experience of seeing Van Gogh’s work, in person, for the second time, had a positive influence on my eye and may approach. I know I put a bit more thought into my color choices. I also know a thought a little more about the deliberateness of my hand. I can see just a bit of difference…a slight improvement. I hope I can build on it…I hope I grow…I know how I’m thinking about my future work has definitely grown. I am more inspired than ever to paint! I may require a trip to the artist supply store! It may require me to start stretching my own canvases!

Party at the Wolf Den, Acrylic on canvas, 30" x 30", 2012