Blue-water Waterfall, 2012

14x11 Acrylic on panel
Collection of Stan and Karen Martin

The Internet is a marvelous tool for obtaining instructional content. I have been enthralled by the resources offered for free. I signed up with, and as a result, I was offered an opportunity to be a student in live web classes that were recorded for subsequent paid distribution. The process put me "in touch" with Johannes Vloothuis from Canada. Johannes, a professional artist, offered insights that were significant to my development. I can no longer look at paintings without his "commandments" of painting coming to the front of observation. Although I went to art school, I never could make all the connections between what was taught and the application in a painting. Johannes has a way of integrating the two. I don't necessarily agree with everything, but that's because of too many years in art history. I do, however, appreciate him focusing my attention on 15 or so commandments--they tend to grow and morph over time.

This painting was the result of a class assignment to paint a waterfall.  I had never painted waterfalls, so it was a challenge. I never submitted this one for critique, but I learned from the critique of others' works--we all make the same mistakes. Someone once told me, "If we were all to confess our sins to one another, we would be stricken by the lack of creativity." So it is with mistakes in paintings; we all make similar, if not the same ones--novice and professional. Professionals look for and correct them, while the novice goes on unaware of their existence. Johannes taught us to look critically at our own work and correct the mistakes -- if not during the painting process, after our own evaluation. 

I like this painting that was painted with my artistic license to make it "real" rather than realistic.

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