Have you ever painted on a canvas?
Painting on a canvas was on my bucket list. Maybe you are an expert and make those beautiful works of art that I see on Instagram. Or maybe you are super-intimidated about putting paint to brush to canvas.
A few months ago I went with a friend to a paint and sip night benefitting a Black Dog Rescue, and we were led through the steps to create a beautiful canvas featuring a black puppy playing in a bathtub. Mine certainly didn’t look like the teachers, but all of our paintings were the same. I was happy with it, and gifted it to my mom in memory of her sweet black lab.
I haven’t painted since. I don’t own my own paints, nor did I remember to throw a canvas into my cart during my last trip through a craft store (let’s be honest…during my last time on Amazon). I’ve wanted to paint again..it was so much fun for me, but something kept me from pulling the trigger. Did I think I wouldn’t be able to paint something… discernable… without the help of a teacher?
Fast forward to last week, and I saw a flier for an Arts and Crafts night in the community where we recently moved. Why not? I’d love to meet like-minded neighbors! I arrive to a group of fantastic ladies, am handed a canvas (and maybe a glass of wine 😉 ha ha), and told the theme is dreamcatchers. No step-by-step directions were given, although the resident Artist was full of great tips for whatever someone wanted to do. I was apprehensive…similar to how I felt in the canvas aisle!
Painting isn’t in my comfort zone… I’m a stamper and sewist!
Then the resident Artist said “If you don’t like something, you can just paint over it.” Those words were so powerful. The reminder we all need sometimes that mistakes are just that, and can be corrected.
I began creating a background: the easy first step to (let the wine kick in) get the creative juices flowing. I created a red to black ombre. I looked up to see others making beautiful blue sky and sunny yellow backgrounds. “Oh no. These ladies are going to think I’m morbid.”
From there I just had fun with it.
No more hesitation.
I’ve been trying to improve my calligraphy, and so why not practice it in paint! I could just paint over it if it looked terrible. But I would welcome any suggestions for how to improve my writing!
One of my new friends mentioned putting a rainbow behind her dreamcatcher. If you’ve read any of my other posts, you might have noticed how much I LOVE creating with rainbows! (Check out the Rainbow Watercolor cards or these Comic cards or these colorful Blooms). But I already had the dark background… it looked like I’d just have to paint over my dark background to add some rainbow feathers! I had so much fun!
Everyone had a very VERY different looking canvas, and each had a unique personality. Great things happen when we let go of the possibility of failure.
TIPS FOR ANYONE TRYING A NEW CRAFT
- Think about what you would do next if the project in front of you was your “craft of choice.” Would you arrange your colors nearby? Would you create a background?
- Accept that this is new to you and out of your comfort zone. No one expects you to be an expert. 🙂
- If you are able, observe or ask what others have done while learning the craft.
- Look online! Tutorials are everywhere for beginners of just about everything.
- Learning the basics can allow you to relax and enjoy your progress.
- Ask yourself “Why am I afraid to create?”
- Don’t compare yourself to others. You are the only one who can create like you do.
- The only person who needs to like it is YOU.
- Try physically putting the pen to the page (or brush to the canvas, or yarn to the needle) without making a permanent mark.
- Don’t worry about making a mistake.
- I can’t stress this enough. I heard a lot of anguish of other people afraid to paint because they “might make a mistake.”
- Art is supposed to be fun. Let it be!
- Purposefully make a mistake. Seriously! You’ll be surprised at how easily you are able to be resourceful and create something beautiful from your mistake.
- I get messy when I’m crafting, and smudges happen. Sequins can cover those!
- Think about what the worst-case scenario. You might need to paint over it 😉 or throw a sequin over it. It’ll be ok.
- You can learn from your “mistakes” and try again.
- Trust your intuition.
- Can I recommend a glass of wine?
- Take a break and relax. You can’t force it.
- You got this! Have FUN!
The process of creating a design without having a plan can be really intimidating. But we all have creativity inside of us and the ability to adapt as we go. We’ve been doing it our whole lives.
I’m a newbie to painting on canvas, but so glad I tried it. I might have caught the bug! When was the last time you tried something new or out of your comfort zone? I’d love to hear about your experience! Did anything help you feel more comforable? Comment below. How did your project turn out?
No matter what your “Craft of Choice” is, Happy Crafting!