Skip to content

Day Three: #OneWeek100People, 2021 – Hitting Stride

March 10, 2021

[@lee_r98, Instagram]

Hey everyone! Crossing the half way mark for some of us?

Liz Steel and I like to do #OneWeek100People in five days, rather than the full seven. It’s a thing – she doesn’t work on Sundays. Which, I think is a very good policy for life.

So – this is exciting. I really haven’t done any watercolor [looks back at the blog] since the beginning of September. So that’s six months away from the medium. I have of course been painting in oils, and done some digital work here and there. But still – I always find it takes a few days to get back in tune with water-media.

[Emily Mack, Sktchy]

[Jasper Means, Skchy]

But it hasn’t been hard to jump back in.  I have a strict policy to love everything I make.

I mean – I’m very critical of my own work. LIke – I can see why this one isn’t a great painting. But I think it’s crucial that we are 100% impressed with our own efforts. It is exactly as good as I am capable of being at this moment in time. The act of making something from nothing, this is an automatic victory every time.

If we don’t insist on this mode of thinking, how are we supposed to find our own voice? Decide what works for us. What is going to be intentionally imperfect, intentionally unreal – choosing to step away from reality, in favor of creating a new image we might want to live with.

[Photo credit, @uriah_forest. Model, unknown]

[Van Lozito, Sktchy]

This is something that I think can only happen during an art-marathon such as #OneWeek100People.

The process of working every day, for a week straight, (or a month – in the case of #30x30DirectWatercolor) – this does two things. It fine tunes your reflexes. The hand-skills of painting. Much like a musician doing scales. Painting is a physical skill that needs to be kept in tune.

But at the same time, the grind breaks you down. You stop caring quite so much about an individual piece.

If you sit down to make one single masterpiece – I think you can’t avoid freezing up. I get anxious about how it’s going to come out. I can’t be free to create by instinct.

If you’re going to make 100 works, you can’t (or I can’t) force myself to worry about each and every one. In this way, the unconscious is unlocked, and the work rises above the limits of perfectionism, to reach a new level.

I hope this feeling is clicking for some of you? Maybe it will by the end of the week. Let’s keep at it, and keep posting our work to the group. I’m interested to hear from you as you close in on your 100’th person.

How did you feel as you sketched your last figure? Think about it and let me know!

Thanks, ~Marc

9 Comments leave one →
  1. March 10, 2021 10:30 AM

    I love this quote of yours and I’m going to carry it with me from this day forward!

    “But I think it’s crucial that we are 100% impressed with our own efforts. It is exactly as good as I am capable of being at this moment in time. The act of making something from nothing, this is an automatic victory every time. If we don’t insist on this mode of thinking, how are we supposed to find our own voice? Decide what works for us. What is going to be intentionally imperfect, intentionally unreal – choosing to step away from reality, in favor of creating a new image we might want to live with”.

  2. March 10, 2021 10:59 AM

    Beautiful sketches as always, Marc. You make look so effortless. The marks, hints, and suggestions all add up to an abstract rendition of moments captured. Sometimes I think, it’s not what to paint, but what not to paint, as I often overwork my watercolors.

  3. March 10, 2021 11:27 AM

    Gorgeous sketches — something for me to aspire to!

  4. Katherine permalink
    March 10, 2021 12:28 PM

    I love your attitude, Marc. I just started doing watercolor a month ago and I feel such fierce joy when I do it. I am trying to sketch as often as I can because while my sketches are of course not very good, I can see tiny improvements over time that are inspiring to me. It is remarkably freeing to not “try” to do a good job, and just enjoy the process.

    Your books and blog are a treasure trove of information that I have found enormously helpful, and I want to thank you for them. Looking at your work makes me happy as well.

  5. Ellie permalink
    March 10, 2021 1:37 PM

    It is wonderful to hear from you again, Mark. All of is need inspiration now, and you continue to provide it. Thanks so much.

  6. Lin Powell permalink
    March 10, 2021 4:11 PM

    I found this quote very inspirational. I have written it down so I can re-read it anytime I feel uninspired by my work. I am now going to look at it differently and learn to love the act of creating something from nothing. A very important lesson you have shared with us all.

  7. scottngov permalink
    March 11, 2021 3:36 PM

    Marc, are you using lunar black for the dark areas?

    • March 11, 2021 3:37 PM

      A bit of this a bit of that – so yes, but also neutral tint, indigo and bloodstone genuine. I sort of stopped paying attention and just grab any dark :)

      • scottngov permalink
        March 11, 2021 5:52 PM

        Love your answer. I was never a technical person and don’t fully understand color mixing. So your approach with going with instinct, works well :)

Leave a Reply to circadianreflections Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: