I’m not one who likes to redo anything. Once a painting is done I say leave it. Once a plant is planted I say let’s see how it grows. Once an action is taken I say own it. I’m not one to back away or even confess that I’m wrong about something or that it could be done better. This is not a good way to learn from your mistakes or improve your skills. A very wise picture framer once told me if I painted 356 paintings a year I’d improve immensely and I’d see in each picture how I could improve. I’m afraid Pride is an ugly green monster who affects us all.

In saying that, something happened just last week that taught me patience and perseverance in my actions. Yes I do need to change my ways sometimes. Those who know me know I’m fairly self assured, but the latest painting I’m working on has been a good learning curve.

It was a big piece half done and sitting in the corner of my studio for years. What put me off was my husband didn’t like what was already there. Anyway, I pulled it out and sat it on my easel and just looked and thought deeply. Surely something good can come from this painting even if it wasn’t what was originally intended. And then I saw a completely different story coming from the canvas. From the confusing and somewhat abstract foundation came a different narrative. 

The painting now tells the story of an adventure I had recently with four great kids. We went hiking in the Conimbla National Park to a waterfall. It had ferns, wombat burrows and all sorts of life. So this painting will not only have the four kids in it climbing a rock wall with a waterfall but also all sorts of hidden creatures. I often give the children animal spotting challenges whenever we are on adventures, so it will have small creatures hiding in it – just for fun.

Anyway, all this from a dud painting. It just shows that “Grace can come from ugly things” (a paraphrased line from one of Russ’s favourite songs – “Grace” by U2). So the next time you come across a challenge or a change is needed, maybe face it with courage because something good may come. I’m so excited about getting back to my painting now. 

Have a good one.

PS Keep in mind that the photo is a quick snap and the painting is not finished.  Consider it a sneak preview.