It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint

I’ve been busy these last few weeks preparing for my first solo exhibit. It’s nerve-wracking, but exciting. The show opens in a week, and luckily, procrastination has also been on an extended vacation!

The painting series is on display until May 1st at Galerie ARTcadienne.

The thing with art exhibits that you don’t really see, is that it takes at least 1-1.5 years from the time you begin painting to when you actually have an opening. In between, there’s the whole business of submitting proposals to galleries (who decide their programming one year in advance), waiting for a response (while keeping hopes high), and finishing painting the rest of the series (this particular one has 29 paintings). It’s a long process, but to see it come to fruition is definitely rewarding!

On a different note, I stumbled across this helpful advice to emerging artists from Canadian-born, London-based Andrew Salgado (who is also quite an incredible painter). Here’s a snippet that made me chuckle, and also rung true:

Learn from your mistakes and learn quickly. Don’t let negativity, pessimism, and failure get you down. It doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

What (advice) i should have ignored: never use white, never use black. Who the fuck doesn’t use white or black? I’m not a watercolor painter.

The Never Use Black rule, we meet again! I’m not sure where it came from, but I’ve heard it so many times it’s become white noise. Admittedly, only after I tried to follow that rule for a few weeks – which did not go well. Let’s just say that all the portraits I painted during that time ended up in the repaint pile. And I’ve said my goodbyes to rules involving which colors to use/not use.

A marathon, not a sprint. I’ve long suspected the biggest difference between those artists who succeed and those who don’t, is sheer persistence. To make it through those first five years, definitely takes some blinding faith (not the god kind, more like faith that everything will work out in the end…well, hopefully before ‘the end’).




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