Happy 2018!

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The View From my Studio Window, Donna Zagotta

I want to wish you all a happy, creative, and productive new year!

As promised in my last post (sorry to be so long), here are some things I tell myself when working on a painting…………..

Donna’s Notes to Self While Working on a Painting 

• No judgements allowed – paint spontaneously and then respond.

• Only create work you love – pay no attention to what anyone else says of thinks.

• Who you are is found in what you love.

• Find and paint that thing that is your own.

• Explanation is the biggest obstacle to creative and personal painting.

• Creativity trumps accuracy.

• Make it ARTificial, not real.

• Don’t paint things, paint shapes, patterns, and relationships.

• Be willing (and even excited) to embrace the mistakes, missteps, and surprises that show up along the way.

• Every painting goes through an ugly adolescent stage – don’t worry, just keep going.

• A painting is always about the artist rather than the subject that inspired it.

             And, here’s one more thing I’m adding to my list in 2018…………

• Take more risks – make your paintings more controversial.

The inspiration for that last note came from a book I’ve been re-reading recently – Finding Your Personal Voice, by Dakota Mitchell – where the author recounts the advice a friend gave her that helped her move past her hesitancy to paint less realistically and more expressively: “I don’t think anyone taught Jackson Pollock to paint that way. I think you should be controversial.” I love that!

Happy Painting in 2018!

11 responses to “Happy 2018!”

  1. robynfrance

    Thanks so much, Donna–and a big happy new year to you. These words are helpful and are the spur onward I could use.

  2. Joe Miller

    Great thoughts from a fabulous artist! May I use them and off course give you credit. Happy new year to you and all of your family.

  3. Margie Clarke

    Happy New Year, Donna! I’m posting your list on my bulletin board. Great advice…. Love your blog and your work!

  4. Hal Wright

    Great words for artists to live by. Thanks, Donna, and here’s wishing you a marvelous 2018.

  5. Laurinda

    Great advice! Some of these things I have discovered along the way and others I will try and remember!

  6. Sandy Troudt

    Your comments were a wonderful inspiration and review for the new year. I’ve passed them on to everyone in my art groups. I always look forward to you messages and hope to catch up with you someday for a workshop. Thanks for all you share and love your work.

  7. Kate

    Thank you!

  8. Nina Allen Freeman

    Thank you Donna! Well written! I want my students to see your blog.

  9. Leah Kucharek

    Had to print your list for inspiration and reminder. Very good advice to paint by. thank you!

  10. Lynn Schilling

    Words to paint by! I’m posting this in my studio…
    Thank you!

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