Saturday, June 19, 2010

2010 HBL Item #22 --DONE!

Today was my watercolor class, held at Shenandoah National Park. 2010 Happiness Bucket List Item #22 is now completed.

I will never be an artist -- one look at the watercolors I did today will tell you that -- but I had so much fun. For three hours, all I thought about was blending, mixing, and painting. Learning something new is intense, and I can understand why people are advised to learn new hobbies throughout their lifetimes, especially as they get older. I can't remember the last time my brain got such a workout!

Painting is not like writing at all for me, even though both are creative arts. Writing comes naturally to me. Once I get started, the words just seem to flow from my brain to the paper, or more accurately in this day and age, the keyboard. Painting today was entirely different. I couldn't get the initial sketch the way I wanted it. I couldn't seem to blend the paint the right way; it was either too dark or too light. I could see the painting I wanted clearly in my mind. What came out of my fingertips was something else entirely.

I tried not to dwell on how frustrated I was by that. I tried to banish those thoughts when they first started to emerge. I was pretty successful, until the end when I was so-oo tired. (Creating is tiring; learning something new is exhausting.) My success was as much a part of the instructor's encouragement as it was my determination. Trilbie Knapp, president of the Charlottesville-Albemarle Art Association, never said one critical thing about my work, or any of the other students' artwork either. Even when I made a disparaging comment on the color of the petal or the shape of a leaf, she ignored it and pointed out something that I had done well.

I'm not racing out to Michael's to by watercolors and paper, but that's not to say I won't pick up the brush again. Who knows, Ms. Knapp may see me in another workshop one of these days.

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