Our Life’s Work

“Life’s Work” ~ 6″ x 6″ oil on panel
BID NOW on Daily Paintworks
“Often people attempt to live their lives backwards, they try to have more things or more money in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are then do what you need to do in order to have what you want. ” 
― Margaret Young
What do you really want to get out of life? Really. If money was no object. Well, do it. The purpose of your life is to to pursue productive, meaningful work. To spend most of your time doing something that you and others find meaningful.. Period. If you’re doing it well, with all of your heart, with passion, then you will find a way to make a living. So many of us have it backwards, we put off life, trying to make a living doing work we hate, so that we can one day do the things we love and be happy.

The purpose of your life is not to become rich, or skinny, or beautiful, or find the perfect mate, or have twenty five children, or work in a cubicle. These may be things you want to do, but they are not your purpose. (Well, maybe they’re yours, but they’re sure not mine…two kids is enough, lol!)

When you find it you will know, because time disappears when you’re immersed in it. Your senses become heightened, you become completely absorbed. A mountain could come crashing down and you wouldn’t even notice. 
So if you are an artist, and you’ve decided that the purpose of your life is to paint, then paint. Paint between commercials. Paint when the kids are asleep. Paint after dinner. Or paint for your job, but just do it! (Easy enough to say, not so easy to do!)
Painters paint, gardeners garden, musicians play, bees buzz…it’s what we do! Does it need a purpose other than it’s what makes you feel alive?
This is something that I’ve really been struggling with. I virtually quit for almost four months. I still painted, but there was no desire behind it. No passion. No thrill. I looked at the canvas as an obligation to fulfill. I had to have something to post to my blog. I had to have something to put in my newsletter. I had to finish what I started. It had to be my next masterpiece. It had to be perfect. It had to fit into some imagined “body of work”.
It had to be sellable, or how could I justify the cost of materials?  I couldn’t just paint and not get paid…could I? I couldn’t just paint because I love painting.  All that pressure. No wonder I couldn’t perform.
Who says our purpose has to be our job? And if it was, would it still be our passion? What do you think?
What’s your passion? Are you doing it? Are you making a living from it? 
Teamwork~ 10″ x 10″ oil on gallery wrapped canvas

I finished these guys a few days ago, but I kept forgetting to photograph them until it got dark!
So…now it’s done.
This gorgeous pair of draught horses are the hardest workers in Barkerville, an old restored mining town that operates as a park in the summer. I’ve talked about it in previous posts, and done many paintings from there. It’s one of my favorite places. It is a  place that has roused my imagination and created a passion for our history in my soul from the time I was a young child, running through the streets, shooting at imaginary gunfighters with my pop gun from the Mason and Daly general store.


Coffee break- original horse oil painting

Coffee Break 6″x6″ oil on canvas panel
 $150.00

Here’s my newest daily painting.
I love horses. I’ve always loved horses. I started drawing them when I was about five and the obsession hasn’t ended. And workhorses speak to me of a time when life was simpler…more real…more in touch. I miss it in a way.
Anyways, you can now purchase it straight from me with paypal, using your bank account or credit card. It’s totally secure. Isn’t technology wonderful?, Lol!

Work Buddies painting a day

“Work Buddies” 6″ x 6″ oil on canvas
A new painting I did today. I’ve been working on a large one for the last week, and it’s giving me some trouble, (as usual…sigh…) so I decided to turn it to face the wall for a week or so, and do some tiny little one-off’s to make myself feel better!
This one will be active on ebay on Sunday at 6 or so…
Cheers! G’night:)

Carriage Horse at St. Stephen’s Green

(please click to make it big!)
I now have total respect for the dude (or dudette) that invented the wheel! Or anyone that can paint them well…OMG! I spent an hour on that smaller wheel, and it’s still not right! It was right, in pencil, once, then I inked it and screwed it all up! (Which I tend to do a lot)  Lol! Anyways…watercolor doesn’t really do what I want on this paper…I guess because it’s not white it makes everything a tad muddy…but oh well, I’m still pretty happy with this one.  It still took all day. I might have to take a few days off of the sketchbook and do some “serious” art, so my hubby starts taking my “stay at home artist” act seriously, though:P.  
A little factoid for you all…Carriage, as it is written on my pic, was actually written on the pavement…parking spots for horses!

A Farmer’s Work…

In the past few years, I’ve become increasingly more interested in natural, sustainable eating and health. This image from Wetcanvas spoke to me of going back to the natural, safe way of eating…hard work, and “real life” instead of the pounding onslaught of consumerism. I want to have a better life. One where we slow down, and enjoy what we’ve made, and smell the clean air, and be in nature. 

This is the photo, on my computer monitor which I routinely work from instead of photos. I like that I can enlarge sections, play with the color and contrast, and crop it till it works. So much of the preliminary stuff can be done on the computer instead of spending hours doing sketches and color studies. I admit, I’m a bit lazy when it comes to that stuff…
So here’s my set up. I don’t have a fancy studio. I don’t have optimal lighting, I have to do the best I can with what I have. Which is a really bright kitchen!:) The thing I absolutely love about my house is all the windows. They wrap around the whole house, filling it with natural light from all directions…which isn’t so great for painting still lifes, but it works for now.
And here’s the beginning stages of my new painting.  I’ve covered the canvas in a thin layer of acrylic in a light, misty green. I think it was Payne’s Grey, Burnt Umber, and Hooker’s Green, mixed with Gesso. I mixed the top section a little greener, and the bottom a little browner, as it will be tilled soil.
I did a grid with vine charcoal for this one, as it’s fairly large, and I wanted to make sure I got the horse bums all in the right place:) You can see the ghost of it where I rubbed it out. I like vine charcoal because it doesn’t really muddy your colors if you paint over it, and it wipes or rubs off very easily. Here, I’ve just drawn in the basic outlines of the main elements and started a block in of the basic colors for the first two horses and the farmer. I try to remember that it’s cool light, so the shadows will be warmer, and I also want the painting to have a mistier, more atmospheric look, so I’m lessening the contrast and cooling out the colors a bit more than in the photo.
Next post will be stage two…now I have to go paint it!
Cheers!