Cheating – Part 1

Did that title capture your attention? If you’re wondering if it’s okay to cheat in your relationship, the answer is no. Always no. Don’t do it. However, you can relax, I’m not here to give relationship advice.

Now onto something I feel slightly more comfortable talking about.

When it comes to painting, I often feel like I am “cheating”. I don’t know the rules of art because I’ve never had any education in it. Perhaps this is why I feel like a fraud calling myself an artist. “Real” artists studied art. I just kind of dabbled with it my whole life and found things that work for me. I actually get really nervous talking to anyone who has any type of formal art training because I feel like I have no credibility and therefore no idea what I’m talking about. I assume that most of the stuff I say/do makes them cringe.

In this post and the next one, I’ll show you how I got to my most recent finished painting with the help of my cringe-worthy “technique.”

1. I don’t plan my paintings in advance.

I sometimes have a general idea of what I want it to look like in the end, but very rarely. Most paintings start with me painting a background and then assuming I’ll come back to it one day and decide what to do next. I’m pretty sure “real” artists sketch out the whole painting and paint in a more orderly fashion as they go. Way less waste of paint and time that way.

See all that paint behind the violin? Waste!!!
See all that paint behind the violin? Waste!!!

2. I mix colors on the actual canvas instead of on a palette.

I usually use a palette knife to do the background and literally slap paint right onto the canvas. I just scoop it out of the bottle with the palette knife (or squirt it if it’s a small tube)  and move it around until it looks somewhat pleasing to the eye. I’m pretty sure you’re supposed to mix the colors on a palette then apply them to the canvas.

3. I use tracing paper.

Yes, you read that right. ALL THE TIME! See this violin, and how it’s symmetrical… well thank you tracing paper. I drew half, traced it, cut it out, flipped it over, and traced it again. Voila. Symmetry.

And you guys probably thought I could actually draw...
And you guys probably thought I could actually draw…

4. I Google search images of things I want to paint.

I can’t just visualize certain things in my head. Far from it. So I rely on Google Images. For example, I knew I wanted to paint a violin, but do you honestly think I’ve ever touched one, let alone seen one, in real life? Nope.

Thanks google
Thanks Google!

5. I paint on my lap, on the floor, at my kitchen table, at my desk… 

…yet I have a giant, gorgeous easel taking up the majority of my tiny apartment! No specific reason for this, sometimes I just feel like it. This is especially true for smaller paintings. I prefer to rest my hand on the painting instead of sitting upright with a paintbrush. However, I always regret this when I get up and have aches in my back and knees from sitting on the ground hunched over. Can’t win em all!

Starting to look like something...
Lot’s of back pain to bring you this violin. You’re welcome.


… I’m going to end this post here for today since it’s getting pretty long and I’d hate to bore you to tears.

Come back soon for the rest of this list, as well as the finished painting. 

I’m curious, do you think less of my “talent” now? Or if you are an artist, do any of these things make you cringe? Be honest!!! 





Mean Girls?

I recently  realized that I completely forgot to post a painting that I completed at least 2 months ago. So from the archives, here it is! Let’s start with the progression of the background.

Progression of the background

Then I added these three lovely ladies on the middle panel.

Don't they kind of  remind you of the movie Mean Girls?
Don’t they kind of remind you Mean Girls? Oh Regina George…

Don’t know about you, but I secretly love that movie. I think it’s just beyond hilarious. And it pretty much marks the point before Lindsay Lohan lost it! Anyways, this painting really had nothing to do with that movie, nor was it inspired by it in any sense, but I was just reminded of it now for whatever reason. The ladies in this painting are intended to be ‘nice girls’ not ‘mean girls’ 🙂

And here you have the finished painting:

Acrylic on three 12x16" canvases. Total size 36x12"
Acrylic on three 12×16″ canvases. Total size 36×12″


As a side note, you may have noticed all these annoying little ads all over my site recently. I’m new to this whole internet blogging world and only recently learned that you can actually make some money with advertising. I never understood how bloggers made money online (without actually selling a product or service) but turns out that online ads is how it’s done. Now unless you get some outrageous number of page hits a day (which I certainly do not!) you’re not going to get rich with this, but I’m hoping it will cover the cost of hosting my website (about $150 a year) and maybe a couple bottles of paint.

If you’re curious/nosy, at the end of every month, I’ll do a post outlining how much I made with these ads. I know I’m totally curious since everyone in the blogging world seems to keep this as some giant secret. So far I’m at $0.55! HAHA Getting rich fast, eh!?

If you are not a fan of this whole internet advertising thing, then simply don’t click on the ads. I only get a commission if you actually click on an ad so you can still visit here often without filling my pockets with money. On the contrary, feel free to help make me rich and click away! I’m sure there are some riveting advertisements popping up!!! haha

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