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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Big 20/20 Event: Day 4: How To Paint From The Soul

Welcome back to “The Big 20/20 Event” - I am so glad you’re joining us! We will be sharing 20 fantastic tutorials from a host of awesome contributors, for 20 days.
If you enjoy the tutorials, make sure you sign up for my newsletter, as all my newsletter subscribers will receive a beautiful PDF eBook at the end of the event, showcasing all 20 tutorial projects to keep and peruse at their leisure!

Here we go with our Day 4 tutorial.


The Big 20/20 Event: Day 4: How To Paint From The Soul


painting from the soul


This post is brought to you by the lovely Jeanette.

Here is my tutorial using directions and photographs to guide you to create a beautiful painting using your own beautiful creativity and some simple directions. I am going to give you an overview that you can use to access your own creative Source. In essence, painting to me is all bout getting out of my ego, connecting to Source (just being open to what may come) and playing.

There may be some struggles and self talk along the way, that tells you "you are silly", "you can't paint", "this isn't working" and so on. I want you to try and temper this with the patience of a saint. Sooth that inner voice with reassurance. Tell her you are just playing and give her permission to not put too much pressure into what comes out of all of this. I remember years ago reading a quote in Julia Cameron's, The Artist's Way, that said, "In order to paint something well, we must first be willing to paint something poorly". I am pretty sure that no one has ever picked up a paint brush for the first time and painted like Picasso!

In this painting I used acrylic, full bodied and liquid, stamps, ink pads, bits of old writing, found objects, I use matte medium for gluing as well as to make my paint more moist when it dries out as I go, a selection of small brushes and anything I feel inspired to throw into the mix. In this first picture you can see the bin that I have some of my stuff in. I drag it out and put it away each time because I live on a boat. I can tell you a lot about how you do this painting, but I can't convey the hours of painting I have done on other paintings to get to this point! You must be willing to play.

You will learn little tricks along the way that will make the next painting more interesting! The most important factor is for you to know you are indeed an "artist". It is your birth right! Just hold that intention in your beautiful heart and begin. I suggest painting on art board to start. It is small and you can do lots and still store them! I did many this way! You may think that they won't be as important if they are on board, but I am here to tell you that I sold some of my early pieces to a very enthusiastic fan, who framed them and has since put them up on a wall in his beautiful home.

Here Is what he has to say:

Jeanette, Your work has made quite an impression on the owner of the White Rock Art Gallery. She came out and said, 'Bruce, you're not going to believe this..' (And I'm not even going to try to tell you!) But after the three had wrapped it all up she said, 'Shoot!' 'We need pictures!' 'Did we get pictures for our site?' Hehe.. I mean, they have $20,000+ paintings in their gallery but had never been quite so impressed with the pairing of art and frame!  Although she doubted whether a picture could do justice to just how incredibly beautiful they are, she made me promise to try and get one of my photographer friends to give it a try. Jeanette, Jeanette, Jeanette.. how fortunate we are to have discovered the brilliant, happy shine of your artistic expression. Glory, glory.. Hallelujah! When the sun lights up the pink room I will try and get us all a good shot! Meanwhile, it's Lindy's face that's really lit up! Thanks, eh!

You have no idea how much this makes my heart sing...woo hoo! And the beautiful part is you can do this too! xo. So don't under-estimate the possibilities of these early pieces! Art is all about believing you can paint and having fun!


the blank canvas



As you can see I started with a blank white canvas this time. I want to mess it up as quick as possible and get over that inclination to keep it all pretty and the "p" word....perfect. For me this isn't too much of a problem...I am a messier girl! I like color and texture so much better than obtrusive white.

Backgrounds are an opportunity to try new things for me. In this painting, I used some Golden Acrylic paints and Stevensons' (a Canadian brand) as well. I work with a matte medium for collage and glue. It is just a polymer like they use in paint without any colour. I have collected bits and pieces, letters, and pictures to use in my painting. I often use magazines and rip and tear and cut, but this time I never used any magazines.


paints galore


Usually I drag out books I have of other artists works that I admire and I even bring out my old paintings. I will not be copying them, but they help me get out of myself and give me inspiration. I am pretty sure everyone does this. Or I look on the web for ideas to get my creative juices going. It really helps! Then I just take the plunge and spread some paint around!


beginning to emerge


I start with a rudimentary sketch of the subject matter. In this case I drew a couple little cuties. It gives me a direction to go in. Creating art is really all about opening up to take risks and not getting too attached to what you put down in the first few layers!

So have fun with it! I used a little tiny spray bottle with water in it, to get the acrylic paint to run in drips. I wanted to try this and thought I could have incorporated it into the piece. This makes for an interesting background. Art is what happens when your busy making other plans. Turns out I didn't really use it, but it did become part of the whole!


faces become clearer



I used a white acrylic pen to draw on the faces. I find white blends easier. You could use a white water color pencil as well. Then I start using a skin colored paint to build up the face. By the time I  feel satisfied with the face, I have put down a lot of paint. I like where the face is going but still not sure about the eyes.

Something wasn't feeling right about the eyes on the right, so I colored it in and stuck some print over it. I did this with both of their mouths. I wasn't loving something about them, the position or shape or whatever...but I like some writing on my faces coming through so I don't get too worked up over it! Remember not to get too upset that things don't go where you think they should the first time, the second time...and so on.

Entertain the possibility that it can go somewhere way better than you have in mind, if you remain open to it!  I talk to myself all the way through the painting. I say things like, "it will work out" and "don't give up"! And you know what? It always does! You will feel so good that you worked through all this inner self sabotage and got to that sacred place where your creativity lives!. And the more layers the better. Just keep that in mind.


texture added



So, now you can see that I have worked through the issue with the eyes and mouth and see the print coming through! I have added some hair color. I am often drawn to characters of this coloring because my sister and I are like this! She is a brunette with brown eyes and I am (was) a blonde with blue eyes! I have added some cheek color as well.


happy faces



The faces are becoming more defined in this shot. I have added more color to the hair and slimmed the faces down using the hair . You can see I added big wings which I later changed. I do like them but I wasn't being inspired to do something with them. I don't worry about changes. I know it will add more interest in the long run. I stand back away from the piece I am working on often to gain perspective and allow the painting to tell me where it wants to go. It wanted to have little butterfly wings and flowers...so off in that direction I went!





I have added a bit of interest to the background using a big brush dipped in white paint and made three swirling circles...ooooh I like! and used an ink blotter to add some polka dots. I used my finger to make the black circles and surrounded them with white. I like this effect.

Even though it got covered up, I may try this technique in another piece! Notice the lettering I was using. I tried it out and did not like it. I have some stamps with letters that I stamped onto paper and cut out in squares that I ended up using. I am going to go buy some archival ink pads, because they are water proof. I sprayed the letters with hairspray. to protect them from matte medium making them run. I also played with some stamping techniques for the background. so, you can see there is a lot of experimenting going on! I am becoming more skilled and knowledgeable with each piece! You can too...just get painting!





I decided to make the letters for this piece using my stamps. I am building a collection of stamps and a knowledge base about them. I have to tell you that this part really has my attention. I am going to learn more and incorporate it into my work. I LOVE stamps!


stamping chaos



Getting closer to the final product! I have made some flowers , glued down clocks. As I go I start getting a message about what this all about. This time I was hearing. Tick tock, what are you waiting for.

Originally I had tick tock on the big wings, with those big letters. It was too much so the it morphed a little into this. Now it has "Dear Hearts, What Are You Waiting For" on it. I was kind of wondering about why we don't just start somewhere right now Because, if we wait for the perfect opportunity, it will never arrive and we won't ever follow our hearts and passions!


background work



The finished product has the background a bit more subdued and soft. I don't like thinks too stark. I am learning this about myself. I was drawn to create a more soft and serene feeling. When things are too hard I am left feeling uninspired. I like gentleness and the midnight blue, red and teal background was causing me to feel cold. The letters are better.

I wanted to work them in without being too fussy. I know that I can be inclined to make things too "just so". I am working on this and giving myself permission to be a bit more free. This is the attributes of other creatives I am really drawn too. But I express myself from where I am and that is just fine! I really have to love myself where I am at. This is the gift I choose to give myself, and that is what makes it okay for me to paint!

I have a collection of odds and sods and among them was that tiny pewter frame. At the last minute I had this intense desire to glue it down on this piece! I found the key that has "Secret" written on it! This is perfect, because, I believe,  the key to manifestation is to begin! To hold that beautiful intention in your heart and take steps into the unknown. To have faith that if you leap the net will indeed appear!


the finished product


If you have enjoyed my little tutorial, please feel free to send me a little testimonial to info@jeanettemacdonaldart.com.

I am thinking about creating an online course or e-book and would so love to be able to use your feedback and testimonials if you feel called to contribute this to my work!

It has been my pleasure to write this. I have had many of my soul sisters, and fans ask me what my process is. So this is my gift to you for being interested in who I am! I hope it helps you on your quest for creativity. And be assured there will be lots of inspiration coming in my future blogs! Thanks for signing up today and I am excited to share the creative journey together! 

Lots of love to you all! xo Jeanette

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Birgit Kerr