I've been a photographer since the era of 110 cameras. (seriously) And while I didn't know it then, for better or for worse, it's shaped my life and my vision.
Learning to paint has been a study in unseeing. I've honed the skills of looking for details for decades, and now everything I've read says I need to forget them and see the bigger picture.
I've been playing with a tonalist style, and failing pretty miserably. At least I feel it's more of an impressionistic style at this point, which is better than photo realism, but still not exactly what I was working toward. I don't have issues with people who paint photo realism, I promise! I just decided that if I wanted photo realism, I'd take a photo, that's what I do...
So bear with me over the next month or so as I fill these pages with attempts at understanding not seeing, and loosening up.
Did I mention I have pastels? I absolutely splurged and got the Sennelier Paris set. These are beautiful little buttery sticks of color that I have absolutely no idea how to use. It's just one more step in the adventure. I also got a set of dark PanPastels. Again, no clue. I didn't like the way they worked with the Sennelier because the applicator just removed the color. (I know, it's probably a totally amateurish thing to do. I will learn.)
This is the first attempt. It's horrible. But at least it looks like what it's supposed to...sort of. It's a start. If I never start, I can never get better. Plus, I figured if I keep a document of even the horrible things, maybe if/when I learn a decent technique, I'll really feel good about it.