8. Procrastination

Whenever I become blocked, or as I call it... creatively challenged, my usual cure is to simply put paint on the canvas. This simple act begins the process, whether I have a subject in mind or I'm planning to let the composition evolve. At least it's a start and I no longer have to stare at a blank canvas on my easel. I know several artists that use this technique to begin every painting and although not every painting ends in success, their productivity and output remains constant. I know other painters that prepare detailed sketches, gather reams of reference material but produce very few pieces as a result of their extensive preparation. Which method is better?...quality or quantity. I sure don't know the answer, but I do know that once you're into the work there is a flow that develops and you would be smart to enjoy the ride and appreciate the momentum. Rely on your training and experience and go with the flow. Normally, I would listen to my own advice, but when the World Cup and/or either of the Olympics are on TV I must admit that it's easy to delay the process, whether there's a painting underway or not. It's a guilty pleasure that I enjoy having played and coached sports for many years. The electricity and colour of the crowds, and the skill of the players is inspiring and always leads to a more productive period following the finals. This is how I procrastinate every four years. If we're lucky, we each have something that may justify delays, as long as they don't turn into addictions. Until next time...