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  • Writer's pictureHilda Van Netten

Day by Day

Updated: Dec 3, 2021

“A single day is enough to make us a little larger or, another time, a little smaller.”

Paul Klee

Most of our Wednesday night artists work full time. Full time, and they arrive and leave in the darkness. They come from high-stress jobs.

I was struck by what one newer artist said last night: Art on Wednesday helps me make it through the week.

Could it be that we all need a little art to find our way back to normal?

The artist below is very new to watercolours. Look at those wispy trees in the background. Nicely done! I can feel the coldness of this painting.

And, when you scroll down, you will see some of her techniques. She uses a piece of similar paper to test her colours on as she mixes them.

Sometimes, the complexity of a project can take our brains away from everyday problems and pains. The artist below has chosen a very complicated image to use as reference. Drawing it by hand requires a lot of concentration. It demands attention in the present moment. Problems and pains fall away for the time being.

Having a long-term project can be a good thing for some artists. I love it. It is like your artwork becomes your friend while you spend time figuring it out. Something pleasurable to go back to again and again.

The artist below has been working on her little portrait for many weeks now. She is learning a lot as she takes her time to figure out tonal values. Look at those eyes!

Well, grandmother has been painted! Sometimes, it takes a village to paint a grandmother. Everyone around the table helped with seeing the correct shadows. Seeing shapes of shadows is not an easy thing. The brim of her cap casts a shadow that falls over her cheek. Can you see it? A high level of trust is needed for the artist to believe that if they draw what they see, it will work out.

We all loved her choice of background colour: cadmium yellow & cadmium red.

I usually spend the three hour session walking around the table and checking in with everyone. There may soon be a track on the carpet, like a dog guarding a house. 🥴 Yesterday, my sore back prevented me from making as many rounds as I normally do.

The artist below was working on her own on the far side of the table. She was figuring out a new combination of mediums to her: coloured pencils and watercolour pencils combined. I zoomed in on her picture from across the table with my camera.

Looks like she is doing a fine job of figuring out that combo, Who knows where she will go with this skill?

I think the quote below can be applied to "life before the pandemic" as in, "You will lose something...."

“You will lose someone you can’t live without,

and your heart will be badly broken,

and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved.

But this is also the good news.

They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up.

And you come through.

It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—

that still hurts when the weather gets cold,

but you learn to dance with the limp.”

Anne Lamott

On Wednesday evenings, we are learning to dance with the limp.

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