Day 9. Painting makes you a painter.

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“Play the Pauses” 6×6, oil on canvas

The next note from the “best advice ever” guided run with Coach Bennett was this: “Running makes you a runner, you don’t have to run everyday to be a runner everyday.”

Let’s try it another way. Painting makes you a painter. You don’t have to paint everyday to be a painter everyday. We don’t stop being artists when we aren’t painting just like students don’t cease to be students when out of school for the holidays. 

I remember being in grad school, waking up at 5 am most mornings to meet my running buddy before class. But if someone asked me if I ran, I’d go into a long and usually awkward explanation that involved words like “not for real” and “just jog really.” I hear so many people do this with art too. Well, they’ll say, I draw, but I’m not an artist. Or I play around with paint, but I’m not really a painter. Let’s just own it already, okay? 

Today’s painting references a photo I took during a second line at a french quarter wedding a few years ago. The musicians were just walking down the street. They weren’t playing yet– still musicians though. Even in the pauses, the breaks, the days off, and, I’d argue especially in the wrong notes. 

When I paint musicians, I typically omit the background of the photo I’m referencing and make up something that suits me. But the purpose of this painting was to see if I could include some basic elements of it and not lose the impact of the figures. I was extra loose with this one, and I dig it.

All this months paintings will be available February 4 in the gallery and online!

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Picture of Denise Hopkins

Denise Hopkins

January 9, 2022

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