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Grateful Even for the Wipers

Spending Thanksgiving in the lovely McClellanville, SC with my husband's family last week had me reflecting a lot on all that I am thankful for this year.

First of all, I am now pursuing my dream because of THIS GUY! His support has been incredible and it has assured me that I made the best choice when saying "I DO" on May 19, 2017.

Between the food (good gracious at the FOOD!!!) and the mingling, I spent some time out in this adorable, quaint shrimping town with my Strada Easel in tow. I attempted my first painting of a shrimp boat. I surprised myself with the result. But the neatest part about this piece isn't the product. It was the process. Painting next to a slew of shrimp boats, listening to the birds sing and meeting lots of very friendly locals as they came in and out of the seafood market nearby with nothing but time to explore a new subject and take in the beauty... yep, that was neat. (The former teacher in me is cringing at that run on sentence. Please forgive me!) I am grateful for every opportunity I have to get out and paint on location because it is always so much more than the painting; it's an experience.

Spending 3.5 days in this tiny town meant that I had a couple of opportunities to get out and paint. I went back to study the shrimp boats, but they were all out. I walked up and down Oak Street looking for more inspiration. Walking around a town like McClellanville with so many gorgeous historic homes and natural beauty, inspiration isn't hard to find because it is truly everywhere you look.

I first painted a home with a bright red tin roof and a massive live oak with Spanish Moss dangling from every branch. The light hitting on parts of the house and shining through the trees struck my attention immediately. While the inspiration was a 100+, my interpretation was just "ehhhhh". So instead of getting bummed, I moved onto the creek view across the way. I worked on this one until again I felt just "ehhhhh". So I quickly wiped them off with mineral spirits and a paper towel. (Oh one of the beauties of oil painting!) I now have 2 panels ready to go for other works that won't be just "ehhhhh".

I am grateful for my husband's support. I am grateful for the experiences when painting out on location. And I am even grateful for the wipers.

Carol Marine (oh yea, SO grateful for her too for her inspiration and instruction) has said it best and it goes something like this:

Think about a piano student. Every piece he/she plays isn't recorded and up for sale. There's lots and lots of practice for hours and months and even years to work out all the wrong notes. Artists have to practice too. And just because we artists have something "recorded" once we are done with a painting, lots should be and will be just practice.

(You can listen to Carol's whole interview on her take on Daily Painting here: )

Carol also taught me in her amazing book, Daily Painting, that wiping is ok... wiping is good. No need to let the "ehhhhh" ones haunt you as they sit around your studio whispering "failure". (Yes, us artists can have some pretty brutal thoughts at times.) Just wipe and move on and count them all as practice that will only make you stronger in the big picture of it all!

So, yes, I am even grateful for the wipers because it's more practice, it's more mileage in this journey and it's always a gained experience when painting outside.


As a THANK YOU to those who follow along with me on this amazing journey, I am doing a #givingtuesday Giveaway of my featured shrimp boat piece. Follow me on Instagram at @fallonpeperfineart and see my latest post for the 2 quick steps to enter. Entry Deadline: Wed, Nov 29 at 9PM!

Shrimpin' Ain't Easy 11" x 14" oil on linen

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