How to know when your painting is done:
It has the same level of completion everywhere. Every part of it is resolved, balanced and has good or excellent composition.
It has enough levels of depth.
It all has a level of excellence for sellable work.
How do you know you have overworked your piece:
The paint gets too thick everywhere losing transparency.
Can’t get a muddy area clean again.
You begin to lose your form.
It becomes too busy or gets oversimplified.
When is a piece a lost cause and needs a do-over:
When there are structural problems, that can’t be changed, like composition or where the subject is placed.
When the theme you chose is too far outside of the sellable market, when your experimental materials have failed you, when the piece became so overworked it was ruined.
What do you do with pieces like this:
If it cannot be sold or given away to family or a friend, then throw it away.
Seeing duds stack up can get discouraging.
You want your successes to be around you.
The art you see around you influences your creative habits.
How to recognize a bad paint day:
Your thoughts and self conversation becomes extremely negative and you cannot seem to come to the other side while painting.
The results are that you make bad painting choices, or your artistic coordination seems awkward.
Simple mistakes multiply into not being able to get anything right.
What to do on a bad painting day:
First realize that this is normal.
Temporarily walk away from your work and engage in a small productive task, like doing the dishes, or organizing something in your studio.
Identify and isolate your thoughts, by doing a quick scan and review of your recent inner conversation.
Replace your negative thoughts like, “I will never get this”, “I’m not as good of an artist as ……..” etc. with truth, like, “I am getting better all the time”, “the painting I made last week, was my best yet”, “I was born to do this”, “art is my destiny”.
Realize that a victim mentality is death to creativity. Comparing yourself to others is the breeding ground for deception. Know automatically that your negative thoughts are for sure coming from a place of deception.
Once you are in a better frame of mind, go back to painting. If you feel like you are having a hard time getting into your right brain then do your favorite right brain exercises.
Shout, dance, rhythmic movements and sounds, singing from your gut, praying, meditating, daydreaming, visualizing something positive, fake writing on a piece of paper, doodle, move left side of body, write with left hand, fake laugh.
Don’t leave studio for the day on a bad note. Try to think of a small task you know you can be successful with. If there is nothing you can do that will make you feel accomplished, try not to leave your painting until your thoughts are centered in truth and you have identified and written down at least 3 solutions.
Never leave your painting feeling defeated, lost, angry and like things will be better if you just leave and forget about it all. This will become a habit that will rule over you.
The enemy of your heart ’s desire wants to discourage you from ever painting again, and keep you out of your studio. Don’t give that negativity a place to stand, and a voice. That is why it is important to create a reason to come back to your painting, like a solution.