I wonder if any artists ever get past the feeling of “still so much to learn”? I love painting, but I have been so conscious lately of stretching myself as an artist, wanting to put more into my paintings. I think that’s why it’s so important to allow playtime in painting. All that serious effort can really hinder the joy and spontaneity I want to paint into my art.

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image created by riesling mama – click for source.

Recently I saw a beautiful stamped image on a paper crafting blog and I wanted to emulate it. At first I was thinking I’d just try a similar thing with stamping, but then I thought, “Why couldn’t I use this as inspiration for a painting?”
(A)spir(al)ing, watercolour, 11x11" | Angela Fehr

I’ve titled this piece “(A)spir(al)ing” which is a combination of the words ‘aspiring’ and ‘spiraling’. Painting this abstract (such a departure for me) was all about playtime, exploring the colour and shape and trying for a sense of symmetry without boxing myself into perfection.

My eight-year-old told me she thought it looked like a butterfly. Sweetheart.

There is something special about painting without borders, just starting with an idea and seeing where it goes. Truthfully, I felt a little self-indulgent, being able to do whatever I wanted, use the colours I love most, throw in shapes wherever they felt good – it was kind of like enjoying a guilty pleasure. Maybe that’ll be the title of my next abstract!