Thursday, June 5, 2014

Daily Painting or Painting Daily

There's an ambitious movement in the world of painting that has inspired lots of painting "hobbyists" to become more serious about their artwork. It's called A Painting a Day or Daily Painting, etc., and the idea is to commit to making a painting everyday for a specified period of time. It can be a great motivator.

The practice apparently started with Duane Keiser around 2004 when he decided to challenge himself and to maximize the internet as a marketing tool by posting (and selling!) a new painting everyday. Duane explains it in an interview in Huffington Post.

I first heard of daily painting through Carol Marine's Daily Paintworks around 2009, about the time I was trying to establish a painting discipline of my own - and totally clueless. The idea of doing a painting each and every day was intriguing, inspiring and seemingly impossible!

So I tried to paint fast and loose... and I really do like those painterly, vibrant brushstrokes... but it turns out I like the details even more!

Although I know there is great benefit to rendering quick interpretation of a scene and simplifying images, the pressure to complete a painting a day is more than I can take. And I'm never satisfied with the results. So, instead of Daily Painting, my commitment is Painting Daily.

Establishing a routine to paint daily was hard enough. I once asked Karen O'Neil how she organizes her day to paint regularly. She said, "I put my son on the bus, go for a run and then I paint." That sounds simple enough.

Now it's working for me (minus the running!) And the more time I spend at the easel the more I observe the subtleties and details that excite me in a composition and I know that's what I want to master.
©2014 Dorothy Lorenze, 9x12" oil on panel
This is Dr. Haines Petit Déjuener. (Dr. Haines is the owner of the top hat - it says so, right inside!)

I'm proud to say that after working on this painting for days, and thinking it was "done" I felt the need to refine the silver butter server and knife, and it's so much better. Maybe someday I'll get it right the first time, but for now, I'll practice patience and perseverance.

Just for fun, a close-up of the before-and-after of the butter server:
Now the silver shines, the bell is rounder and the knife lies flat. 
I'm a happy camper. And this painting is on its way to Greene Gallery in Guilford, CT.

Thanks for stopping by to view my art!


  1. No matter the artistic discipline, working at it daily is a must for continued growth. Your commitment is laudable, and the results speak for themselves.

    1. Yes Win! Totally agree. I know you are working lots too! I'm sure you are an inspiration to your students.
      And thanks for the compliment ;)


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