PADDLE BOAT IN NORTH FLORIDA
An original oil painting by June Pauline Zent 30×40 inches
Most artist’s will not accept taking directions from anyone and their most creative works emerge when they are inspired or passionate about someone or something. It gags me to have someone say, ” you should , or it would be better, or you need a thing right there”. I can tolerate and appreciate someone saying, ” It makes me feel happy, sad, excited, depressed, sick at my stomach, or want to through up” than “You should”. I am tempted to reply, “if YOU think that YOU should then YOU should do it!”
I am not asserting that artist’s do not take or seek creative criticism. They search the work of masters both ancient and modern. They agonize over color, mood, depth, light direction, contrast, and all technics from someone whose work they deem to be superior. Just don’t try to tell them WHAT to paint. Content is the dividing line otherwise originality disappears. There are exceptions: the painting above was created taking a certain degree of direction.
Masterpiece Canvas in San Francisco emailed a call inviting artist’s to compete in a contest using their canvas. No problem there because their product was exceptional. Actually the floral painting below was selected as an advertisement for their canvases sometime after this competition was finished. I always used their canvas when I could afford it.
An original oil on canvas by June Pauline Zent 22×24 ”
Masterpiece presented ten photos of different subjects for you to select one as your theme. WHOA! directions! I came close to not entering but there was one that contained a little paddle boat peaking my interest. After staring at it for several days considering how to place it in a setting of my own composition an idea came. I would visualize it parked in a lake surrounded with forest with the brilliant North Florida sunset spilling through the trees.
It worked for me and apparently for them because I won third place in the show. True, not a huge prize but I was in the money. Then too since only four prizes were given I felt fortunate to win any place in an international competition.
Every rule that you follow always has at least one exception. But as a teacher I strongly believe that freedom of content is essential for originality. I urge students to spend time thinking about how passionate they feel regarding a subject that they plan to paint. I do not teach WHAT to paint; I teach the skills of HOW that are required to paint their vision.