Planning and Feeling

Posted February 11 2015
Over the past years, we've filmed artists of varying interest to me. Because of the nature of my job, I've reviewed their workshops all the same.  It has been a surprise how much affinity I've found with each artist. Be they watercolor, oil, pastel or mixed media, I learn from the approach each individual has applied to their creative process.  

Some artists are very analytic. I'd put my mother (Jan Kunz) into this category. She carefully observes her subjects, especially the light, and plans her paintings. Her ability to handle the medium is amazing. Feeling plays a strong role in the process, but it is not dominant directive. For the most part, I follow in her footsteps as an observer. 
 
In contrast, other artists rely less on planning and more on feeling their way to a conclusion.  Barbara Nechis is such an artist. She absorbs her information via her heart.  Before she begins her painting she studies and then puts her reference materials aside and paints archetypal shapes that echo her experience.  She encourages her pigments more than controls them.  It's fascinating!

Both techniques/approaches are equally valid.  And, happily, each have so very much to teach us no matter where we are on the continuum.

Lynn Powers
LynnPowersArt.com