Corinne maakt

My drawing and painting life

Let’s become a finisher

A few days ago I decided to take stock about the art challenge. I made a list of things to do to make sure I do reach the target of 101 pieces. There’s always loads of new things to try art wise. Always nice. But is that what is needed right now?

A good way to proceed might be to start finishing a few pieces lying around my house. More reasons than one to do that. At first glance, it would seem an efficient way to go about the challenge. They all need one step. Just one step to go, to get a finished piece of art. Reason enough, don’t you think? There are so many pieces unfinished – about which I don’t know how to go further – and they are starting to ‘weigh on me’. It would feel a lot better if they would all (or most) be finished.

On the other hand: finishing things – which is not such a bad idea in itself – ‘weighs on me’ , too. Is it really so easy? All of these pieces are all in a state where you have to work hard. Try out things on photos or copies, it may take a while to find the best way to proceed. Or try things on the piece itself, and find if it works. If it doesn’t work – that might backfire. Aw, loosing a piece…. Now I hear the voice of some of my teachers, Karine Swenson:”It’s only paint and a canvass….” That’s right. But it’s also killing one of my darlings! It may not be so easy as it sounds. But Karine is right: that’s the deal, you have to push further. Push it to make it (=the piece) better. Push it to get better at it (me = a better artist). In the process you may loose some pieces, but some of them may just become truly wonderful.

I found out about an extra reason to finish pieces the other day: practice makes perfect. Just do it, and finishing will become easier. I read a piece on the blog of Niya Christine, an artist and designer in the Bay area, in USA. She entered in a kind of challenge with herself by the end of 2012. She set herself the target of making a piece each day during the year 2013, starting January 1st. In her blogpost she wrote that this practice of making art every day has brought her a lot. For a start 365 pieces of art. Also, she wrote a book about it . But the most important thing (for my thinking right now at least): it made her into ‘a finisher’. Doing art every day taught her how to finish a piece. I thought that was a real eye-opener: you can learn to be a ‘finisher’ just by doing it.

So I just had a quick look to see what speaks to me most – from the list i mentioned. And I asked myself – what am I drawn to the most? I find I want to do some more work with acrylics. Collage and acrylics to be precise. And gelli printing. Gelli printing is very inspiring, it does give some wonderful results from time to time. The failure rate is high as well. But that’s no problem when you like making collages! Gelli printing: a fast method for making a lot of painted surfaces . It will feed back into my art practice.

Summarizing, I find that I am particularly drawn to do some more collage work and finish some collage-based pieces. So I am committing to do at finish at least the piece in Lynn Whipples class. I’ll do that and then decide what will be the next thing: finishing or doing something new. Do what feels best. I may just be trying out new things between the ‘finishing’, like watercolor work. After all, I entered the summer art camp and took lessons in watercoloring. Let’s not these lessons go to waste! I will do some of those also.

Anyway, here’s a gelli monoprint from last year, my favorite one actually.

Monoprint on paper.

Monoprint on paper.

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4 comments on “Let’s become a finisher

  1. Iris
    August 24, 2014

    Very interesting insight, that you can practice being a ‘finisher’. That’s great!

    • corinnebekker
      August 30, 2014

      Yes it is. Thanks for having a look at my blog, Iris. Always like your posts online.

  2. Juna Biagioni
    August 24, 2014

    Great post. Let’s become finishers… so we can start lots of new things!

    • corinnebekker
      August 30, 2014

      Thanks for dropping by Juna. Always love to hear from you!
      And indeed, let’s. A week later I already feel more like a finisher, had several responses and conversations about it. It feels good. And opens new possibilities to start new things.

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