How important are goals in your art? I’m thinking about my goals all the time – sometimes regarding marketing and self-promotion, but periodically I also need to assess the direction my art is taking.
Sometimes I paint from a to-do list of painting objectives – like the series of florals I did in order to make prints for my art cards. There are times when I apply recently learned concepts to strengthen my work – paintings focused on improving my composition skills, or on using a limited palette.
But this weekend I looked at my goals from a new perspective. I’ve been struggling with some of my recent paintings – seems like I’ve painted a lot of junkers – and I wonder if it’s coming out of a confusion as to what I want to achieve. Am I a realist? Am I an impressionist? Am I a landscape or a floral artist? Does it even matter – can’t I just paint whatever I feel like painting?
I don’t think this means I should give up landscape painting – if I’m motivated to do it, I should learn to do it better. But perhaps I need to keep in mind that florals flow for me – I can dance a petal across a page and feel so free and satisfied. When I am struggling to master a new technique or refine my skills, taking a break to paint from my instincts fuels my creativity and renews me. And I never get tired of the perfect lines in some of my favorite florals.