Waiting Until You’re Ready to Paint

Sometimes I feel regret for not having done something sooner…

And this will be common sense to some, but for me I need to remind myself, that sometimes the stars need to align just right for you to get a thing done that youíve been meaning to do, and I think thatís okay. Maybe it was meant to be done later, you know?

Maybe you needed to have all the pent up energy for it to just happen one day, like a sort of mini explosion.

I mean, usually Iíd say you need a series of ritualistic actions that you need to force yourself to do on a regular basis in order to get anything done, because youíll never FEEL like going for a run, or breaking a bad habit, or getting out of that relationship for goodÖyouíll never FEEL like doing anything out of your comfort zone, ever.

Hugh Laurie said ďIt’s a terrible thing, I think, in life to wait until you’re ready. I have this feeling now that actually no one is ever ready to do anythingĒ,

But now Iím thinkingÖ

Maybe forcing yourself could end up in a series of failures that arenít really failures…youíre just not quite ready. In which case, I think itís okay to wait until you ARE ready, by just moving more slowly in that direction.

Waiting for the right circumstances is natural and inevitable. Itís happened all my life. It happened yesterday,

I picked up some oil paintings for the first time and I mean wow, it was fun.

I was pushed over the edge to finally try it because of three things that happened simultaneously:

    • An abstract artist recommended a documentary on Basquiat. He was a 20-something year old whose paintings sell for millions now, who hammered out hundreds of paintings a year while moving to music, painting not exactly what he saw but how he was feeling. He made it look fun, effortless, natural, and most poignant of all to me…doable.
    • Then conveniently my Dad found a bunch of blank canvaís & oil paints in the spare room, which he was about to throw out.
  • Plus I had some empty hooks and spaces on my walls.

It was time. The time had come.

And so, on a particularly sunny day off from work, I got up early and gave life to these two:

Oil on canvas – 24/01/19, James Baldwin & Nina Simone, 2+3 hours

Itís perfectly what I had in mind, which for me is an absolute win. Turns out I knew more than I thought I did about painting with oils.

Which is another thing I think translates across all elements of life…most of the time, you know more than you think you do and youíre capable of more than you think you are capable of.

But Iíd been moving in that sort of direction for a while…Iíd been going to more art events, talking to more artists, had sorted out my art supplies and cleaned up my desk…heck, Iíd even cleaned up this website.

Iíve been stressing about having nothing to show in my portfolio, but Iím starting to see that I just wasnít quite ready. Like plantain or pears. I wasnít quite ripe.

I have been getting ready, though.

And going slowly, while keeping it in mind, and all those previous failed attempts…added up to a thing that I have now finally done.

Very cool. Awesome. Note to self: youíre doing good. Keep at it.

Click here to visit my shop for more Nina & James printed on posters, stickers, notebooks, mugs & tees : )

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