Painting as a hobby unsettles me, but I honestly don’t think that’s a bad thing.
Painting unsettles me in the sense that part of me just wants to find (and stick to) a comfortable format that works for me so that I can do it successfully and feel good-enough about it, basically building the ability to churn out multiple variations in a similar style in a satisfactory creative cycle of rinse-and-repeat. Yet deep down another part of me always wants to keep on trying something more, keep moving forward by learning new skills and new techniques rather than just settling for what I can already do, what I’m already comfortable with achieving.
There’s an internal restlessness and a curiosity in me that questions the wisdom of sticking blindly with the self-limiting safety of familiarity. Instead it seems I want to keep pushing my creative boundaries beyond my comfort zone because however hard I find it to do, I know that ultimately, constantly challenging myself to try new things – deliberately unsettling myself time after time – stops me from stagnating in life…
For this year’s April Blogging through A-Z Challenge I’ve decided to follow the art-inspired theme of me, now in my 60th year, exploring and experimenting with how to paint using acrylics, gouache and watercolours. After a couple of false starts this is a relatively recent journey I began in earnest a few months ago. So far it’s been an even split between fun and frustration, getting to grips with all these new painting skills, but I’m determined to keep going with it this year and see where it takes me… 🙂