Crazy Artists? No, Not Us!


Crazy? Weird?

  • Is it because some artist years ago behaved in a crazy manner? Perhaps from what Vincent van Gogh did?
  • Is it because some artists started painting crazy wild paintings? Like since Paul Gauguin’s time?
  • Is it the way some arty people dressed in hippy fashion a few years ago? Why did artist dress weirdly? Mainly because people only accepted you as a real artist if you dressed weirdly!
  • Is it because artists have liberated views and do their own thing? Knowing they have inner conference, they don’t really care what people may think of them!
Crazy bright colours

A5 watercolour: How green is our valley.

So, how do artists feel about been called crazy?

Crazy, weird! No ways. Not us! Don’t laugh….

It’s the `muggles’ that are crazy. They don’t use the magic that is in them! They let the real world pass them by. They don’t see the beauty that’s all around them.

They don’t take time out to observe the contrast of colours and tones, the atmospheric dimensions or rim-lights, or feel the energy in the most simplistic forms. Their lives must be bland. They have never truly lived!

Do they call authors crazy?

Of cause not! But, authors also need to use their imagination to conjure up plot concepts, just like artists have to conjure up new composition concepts.

When authors have a few facts, they still have to work out the in between stuff to get the story flowing. Same with artists, we have to bridge the basics to dramatically get peoples’ attention and imagination flowing.

Do they call musicians crazy?

Well I must admit, some of the music we hear these days could be called crazy, perhaps weird. It’s certainly upbeat and loud! So it’s not surprising art has become bright and `loud’ too.

But seriously now, the classic type of music is well thought out. Melodies must have rhythm. So must artwork to reach the hearts of those who look upon it.

Getting the composition together takes lots of work and the use of the inner soul to feel that they have reached the point where they know, this or that song is just right, perfect enough to put out there for public consumption.

So it is with artists:

We have to use our imagination and feelings to touch the senses and emotions of the public too. So, is using our feelings crazy? No, when you consider how people only buy art when their emotions are stimulated.

So what if we dress more interestingly than the average person out there! How we dress and behave is because it gets us in the mood of creativity. And of cause it’s groovy and fun to dress up.

And be grateful for our individuality. Why should we walk around being just copies, reproductions of all those dull un-interesting bland `muggle’ people out there?


So feel free to add what you would like to say in the comments block below. Us artists must stand up for ourselves!

Other links on artistic creativity:

Facing FEAR !?

Facing FEAR:

I’m always anxious for artists, especially beginners. If their confidence is shattered, their potential talent is lost forever. Locked away in the capsule of fear!

That is why I’m concerned about people who are scared to paint with watercolours, because of its fluidity. To me, that is very sad.  If they would only take the time to play with their brush, watch how the colours blend and go with the flow, they would see its fluidity creates the most beautiful blends of colours that no other medium possesses.

Facing fear

A5 watercolour painting: Autumn colours.

Handling the fluidity of watercolours: It’s a matter of:

  • Watch what you are actually doing. Where are you putting your brush hairs? Do you want to touch (tip) the previous wet paint and let it blend, or not.
  • Remember liquid runs easier where it is wet.

The effects, you make, depends on:

  • How much liquid, water and paint is on your brush.
  • How wet, damp or dry your paper is.

As simple as that!

When people learn to control FEAR, they learn how to use it to their advantage!

  • Amateurs tend to think they are the only ones who experience FEAR when painting. “Will people laugh at their attempt?”
  • And starting with a blank white canvas…. can be intimidating.

Everyone experiences this fear to some extent.

If anyone tells you proficient artists don’t face fears, they’re telling lies. When starting a new painting there is always a certain amount of trepidation, “What if this painting turns out a flop?” because at the back of their minds they know that not every painting is a success.

I can hear beginners say, “Wow. Does every artist feel and think that way?!”

And that’s not all!  Even, after having started on a painting, there comes a moment when that FEAR has the cheek to come back. “So good, so far… But what if I spoil what I’ve done so far?”

How does that FEAR feel deep inside? Just sort of scary?  Very scary?

Remember fear is a natural reaction:

  • Have you ever thought: brave courageous deeds usually occur during the time of horror and trauma?!
  • Fear also comes with the unknown, what may or may not happen in the future.
  • When starting any new job, there is less fear when you know what to do and how to do it.
  • In planning compositions, artists need to anticipate possible problems beforehand, to be able to handle any unexpected occurrences that may or may not happen while painting.

So when you start on a new painting, ask yourself:

  1. “Can I learn anything from this experience?” Knowing mistakes are usually learning curves.
  2. “What is the worst thing that could happen?” What are you so worried about?
  3. And if it should happen, “How will I recover from it” Always have another contingency plan of action that you can adapt to if need be.
  4. On the positive side, think: “What could be the best thing that could happen?” This question helps build courage to go forward, even when you feel scared.
  5. “How am I feeling? Can I control this feeling? How can I turn it into a good feeling?” Possible solutions: Soft gentle music, and absorbing the beauty of another artist’s work that inspires you.

Reflect on the consequences of your actions:

Remember fear is a motivating catalyst, when you consider that fear generally precedes success. As time goes on with more and more painting experience, you’ll begin to realize consequences of courage: usually happens to people who proceeded, in spite of what may have happened.

Have you ever thought of why and what makes people successful in life? They have learnt how to overcome fear. They actually appreciate the feeling of fear, because they know it’s part of being stimulated into doing something that could achieve greater success.

If you don’t do anything –nothing ever happens:

Progress and success comes with courage and wise anticipation.

As artists, one has to practice your skills often, in order to reduce mistakes and the feeling of trepidation. With each successful painting, your confidence is built on the knowledge you can do it.

  • It also boils down to, how strong your ambitions are.
  • With each small success, builds more love for what you like doing. When you love what you are doing, it takes away fear.

Solution to fear:

If you haven’t painted for some time, whether it’s three months or three weeks, I found it’s wise to loosen-up by doing a little bit of doodling first, before going onto attempting to paint something that’s important.

That is, take a piece of paper (not expensive paper) and slash paint on, will-nilly, nothing serious or complex. Anything, that gives you pleasure. This helps to free-up your brushstrokes and your mind, and allows your imagination to flow freely.

Putting passion into your brushstrokes, takes away the feeling of fear and trepidation! You feel more in control.

The reason why I said not expensive paper is because often fear comes with the thought you don’t want to waste paper and paint. Once you confidence is built through doing, you feel brave enough to paint on that more expensive paper.

Remember you make the difference, not the cost of the paper, paints or whatever other people may or may not think of you. What is important, is that you never give up on yourself, express yourself freely, in the moment of pure creativity.

For more insight into handling fear:  Check out Darren Rowse at ProBlogger.

How is Artistic Talent Born?

Everyone thinks artists are born with talent! But in fact artists are self-created.

Here are SIX basic ways how an artist is born:

Firstly: by the inner makeup of the person:

Artists are created, by their own very inner deep emotional desires and conceptions.

  • It’s usually people who love colour, the contrast, blends and certain combinations of colours that make artists, out of ordinary men and women.
  • And how light creates sparkling highlights, rim-lights, auras, atmospheric conditions, reflections and filtering of light, etc.
  • They are people who see beauty in Nature and the sounds of Nature.
  • They don’t just see things, they see exciting shapes: how those shapes interlock with one another, perhaps how one dark shape opposing a lighter area, etc.
  • They don’t take things for granted. They are deep thinkers: what if I did this or that, how would it look then?
  • The excitement of looking deeply into things, for example how colours contrast or blend etc, is what stirs their imagination, the emotional side of their personalities.
How talent is born

A5 watercolour: Simplicity of shapes within a composition. Notice the colours within the shapes are mainly blurred and there is very little detail.

Secondly: possibly their background:

  • The environment of where they lived as a child.
  • How their mother or father introduced them to Nature and the deeper understanding of their surroundings.
  • Who taught them to think for themselves and experiment with what they had learnt. That is, how to make and invent things for themselves.

Thirdly: finding joy in living in the moment:

People who always worrying about the past or what’s going to happen in the future: but don’t always enjoy the present…. whereas artists are inclined to live in the present and value the present.

  • Active artists live and create in the moment of creation. But if distracted, the inspiring vibe they are working with or train of thought is broken; the whole concept of the painting suffers.
  • Not only is concentration important, but the emotional impact the artist is enjoying while painting. That is: what he or she is feeling, about the mood they are creating in their painting.

Fourthly: No one achieves anything without practicing their craft:

  • You won’t like doing something, unless you enjoy doing it.
  • And you only like doing it because you had some success doing it.
  • And you only have success when you persist in learning how to do it.
  • Successful artists are those who never gave up on themselves.

Fifthly: Starting out with simple concepts:

No one becomes an artist overnight. All the old masters and renowned artists of today started out as babes! They learnt stage by stage, concept by concept. For example: you only get to standard 10 or grade 12, by starting in grade one and progressing from year to years until you get to grade 12:

  • In grade one: children learn simple basic facts and how to write the alphabet! That is how great artists first learnt their trade, by copying simple shapes and colouring them in.
  • Because people first appraise art by assessing the basic symbolic shapes they see in art, you’ll find that the most popular paintings are based on simple compositions!
  • Notice even negative areas are shapes interlocking with the outlines of object shapes. And that all contour lines are outlines of shapes whether positive or negative.

 So what does all that tell us?

That the outer edge of a shape speaks volumes symbolically! For example, that is a man and that is a tree shape.

 Sixth: Art is based on emotional skill:

How the artist relates to his concept.

  • The quality of the outline edges of the shape suggests the circumstance of the situation and how the object relates to its environment.
  • And what does appeal to peoples’ emotions symbolically is how and what the colour of the inner part of a shape, was applied. That is: if the outline is a tree shape and the inner part of the foliage area is green, it shows its spring or summer time.


The quality of any artist’s art is based emotionally on shape, the quality of contour lines to that of the objects surroundings and inner colour format. Simple as that!!

Notice there wasn’t much said about detail. Any detail that is included is confirmation that the object is authentic in its setting.

Do you agree with that?

  • Do you agree we all have potential to become artists if we apply ourselves to our ambitions?!
  • Would very much like to hear your opinion, so feel free to leave a comment.

Want to learn more about artistic talent:

For more stuff on using your inner creative powers, check out the Art & Fame page and also the other categories listed on the sidebar of that page.

How Do You Handle Criticism?

How Do You Handle Criticism?

First endeavours blown!!

You have just finished painting a picture and you are feeling good about it, and then along someone and you hoped they would give you a positive valuation. But instead, can you believe it, they criticize it!   ……I bet you feel like screaming!!

Handling criticism as artists

A5 watercolour: The glow of the sunrise touches every living thing. “Let sunshine shine in your hearts today”

Criticism can be so hurtful. Like a balloon that has just popped, you feel empty. All the faith you had in your ability to paint …has just evaporated.

Wow! You wondered why you even asked for their opinion. Why did they pull it apart and dissect it like that? They spoilt it all for you!  ….It isn’t long before you’re getting angrier and angrier at their unkind remarks. Don’t they know your whole heart was in that painting? And now you don’t feel like changing anything about it ….just to spite them.

How do you handle criticism?

You ask yourself, “Did their criticism help?” “Did their advice really apply in this case?”

  • Maybe you think to yourself: “Perhaps they are right, I’m a lousy artist,” and then decide to give up and never paint again?
  • Or you try to explain to them what you were really trying to do? That the horse you painted wasn’t a mouse or cat as they said! And have them look more closely at, with what looks like a puzzled look of pity on their blank faces?
  • Or give them a mouthful and tell them to `hop it and get lost’? Only to have them retort, “Don’t get all worked up, we were only trying to be helpful!”
  • Then you remember they’ve never painted anything themselves, so what do they know? And then decide to `take it with a pinch of salt’ and dismiss their silly remarks.
  • Or perhaps turn the painting to the wall and start another painting, something altogether different, in the hopes it will turn out better than the last effort, hey?

No matter what people may think of you and your paintings, remember:

  • Some people can’t look at anything without finding fault. It’s in their nature. Some people excuse this behaviour as, `I’m a perfectionist’!
  • Yes some people do expect everything in paintings must be perfect, full of precise detail and look authentically like the visual-aid photograph you were painting from. They don’t want paintings, they want enlarged photos!
  • Some people are critical because they are jealous or just plain spiteful. It gives them a thrill to act superior and put other people down.
  • Some people don’t approve of your art because they think art is just a hobby and you are wasting your (their) time!
  • Not all people are professional artists. But keep it in mind each has a personal art preference. Some people like abstracts, bright colours and stark shapes. And others like paintings to look authentic, with mellow moody scenes. And some are just looking for something that vibes madly with their décor.
  • And then again, some people are trained art critics. Think again about what they have to say. Maybe their advice could improve your talent.

Conclusive judgement on criticism:

Judge the situation before jumping to conclusions.

  • Everyone has their own opinion of what art should be. Not everyone will agree with you or see your point of view.
  • And the way your painting turned out, isn’t what you initially had in mind anyway. So what?! Let them think what they like you enjoy messing around with what you do.
  • Even if your art isn’t wonderful at this point of time, remember talent is a growing thing. The more you practice your craft the more it improves, and your personal expression and techniques evolve with time.

 You count:

No matter what your style of art is, it feels good to experiment and use your imagination.

Like any author, film producer or even a fashion designer, we wouldn’t have new technology if it wasn’t for people who used their imagination and ventured beyond present know-how.

Artists see something that stirs their imagination and from that moment of initial visionary impact, a concept is born and their talent and abilities take over. The end result is what the general public enjoys today.

So don’t give up, you are on a journey to success. Act the part, feel the part, live the part. As the saying goes, `Fake it, till you make it’.  Believing in yourself helps to make the transition come about.

Are you being who you want to be, or are you doing what other people assume, or you’re conned into believing who you are?!

Handling criticism as artists

A5 watercolour: When you travel through life see the beauty of nature all around you.

Would love your input on this subject of criticism:

What do you think and react when people criticize your work? Feel free to leave your comment in the comment-box provided below.

For more info on how to become a famous artist, click on the page “Fame & fortune” and follow-up on the blog categories as well, listed down the sidebar on the page.

Quality of Modern Art?

What type of modern art do you like?

  • Morden abstract art
  • Fine art
  • Authentic realistic art
  • Impressionistic art
  • Cartoon art
  • Naive art
  • Ethic art
  • Surreal art
  • Weird art

    Modern art

    Oil painting of Dutch Cape styled house in the town of McGregor. Late afternoon with mist coming over the Riviersonderend mountains.

Modern art: What is out there today?

Sometimes you walk into a gallery and what do you see, but a bright kitsch rudimentary painting hung in a prominent position. You’re stunned, can’t believe it, how can they pass that as art? Why is the gallery promoting it? Perhaps the artist is a relative they’re trying to help out?

And modern art on the internet: most of the artist’s websites these days seem to lean towards abstract or naive art. What has become of art? What is considered art? It seems art doesn’t have to be a painting or a carved statue. Photographs and anything that is a creative artifact is accepted as art.

Google has a wide selection of images of art, including works of the old masters. Thankfully you can ask for a selection of aesthetic watercolours, oil paintings or pastels, depending on what you would really like to see. And there are some wonderful works of art, showing there are still professional artists out there with exceptional style.

 What is happening to the quality of modern art?

We have to remember there are a lot of artists out there, each with diverse inclinations and aptitude skills. We mustn’t discourage budding artists, we all had to progress through practical experience. And trends come and go according local and global fashions and environment issues.

What I like:

I think art should be something between reality and fantasy.  Aesthetic brushstrokes and detail contrasting with blurred atmospheric conditions. Paintings with emotional impact that stir your senses, every time you look at it you see something new or fascinating about it. And as my husband says, “Paintings which you can spin a story”

It seems this is a somewhat controversial subject! Everyone to their own taste and opinion!

 What do you think of modern art and what you think it should be?

What are your first impressions of modern art? What is so dynamic that grips your attention? What is your personal preference? What appeals to you? Colour combinations, line, mood, what?

What artists’ websites would you seek out and what would keep you going back to see what they are doing on their sites? Is it their talent? Or is it the way their website is set out? What is it they have on their sites? Is it their type of content? Is it entertaining, interesting or factual, what?

If you aren’t an artist, what message would you like to send out to artists?

Love to hear from you…