I remember a conversation I had with Jeanne Oliver a few years ago. We were talking about art and the classes she offers through her website. At the time, she was offering a painting class that was based on copying the work of masters. I remember not knowing quite how to feel about that…a class that is encouraging a student of art to copy the work of someone else. Isn’t that a no-no?
Well, that conversation was such an encouragement to me. Jeanne shared how copying can be a wonderful way to learn new techniques and explore your own style within the framework of someone else’s work. Copying is a bad thing when you just rip someone off and don’t give them credit or when you’re delving into the world of copyright infringement, but when you’re using it as a learning tool, there is a lot of value in it.
I have often thought of that conversation when I’m inspired by the work of others or when I see work that was inspired by my own.
It’s been especially on my mind as I’ve been doing more painting, with the landscape dressers, murals for Lucketts, and now water colors and sketches.
I’m learning and I need to look to the work of others for inspiration and instruction.
So, I was having a chat with Calvin about his room the other day and he asked me to paint some “Star Wars guys” for his room. He really wants a full mural, but #1 – his room, with the sloped ceilings and awkward dormer, isn’t conducive to a mural and #2 – this room will double as a guest room and my in-laws don’t need Boba Fett staring them down each night before bed.
I decided that some Star Wars artwork would be a nice option.
I looked around for inspiration and found the most amazing artist, Clementine from Blule. She shares a painting each day on her blog for free. Well, sign me up for that! Anyway, she has painted a host of Star Wars characters and I loved the style, even though I had never even attempted anything like it.
Clementine lives on the other side of the world and we’ve never met, but as I worked on these paintings for Calvin’s room, she was my teacher. I examined each of her paintings and tried to mimic them, sometimes breaking free to do my own thing, just putting my toe in the creative waters.
I had such a blast creating these for Calvin, with all of the splatters and running, and he was excited about the fact that I painted them just for his new room. I’m going to pick up some frames for them later this week and will get to work on other elements to turn the guest room into his room.
And, as a bonus, I had a good excuse to play around with some new-to-me painting techniques.
By the way, I e-mailed Clementine to ask her permission to post my copies of her work on my blog and she graciously said it was okay. She sells originals and prints of her work and ships worldwide from her online gallery, if you’re interested. You can also follow her on Instagram HERE.
And, just so much days aren’t boring, I spent yesterday cooking and canning!
Never a dull moment…