3-A-Week Challenge wrap-up

a selection of the paintings from my 3-A-Week challenge in October 2019

My primary art-making goal for October was to create three paintings a week as a way to put more of what I’m learning in Matt Smith’s online mentorship program into real-world experience. I started out strong! I met my weekly goal the first three weeks of the month, then fell off as I got focused on other things.

It was a super valuable project and even though I didn’t fully reach my goal in numbers, I’m very happy with completing nine studies for the month. I submitted several of them for Matt to consider during his bi-monthly critique sessions and he chose one to provide feedback on. That was really exciting because hearing his thoughts on where we can improve is one of the primary benefits of this program.

He selected my study of a valley in Zion to critique. The main takeaways from his comments:

  • go darker with the distant mountains to accommodate the value of the sky (this was my main trouble spot with this painting that I had asked for help with)
  • add more contrast by making the darks darker
  • use more paint

I agree with all of these suggestions, especially the one about using more paint, lol! That’s one I definitely want to be doing and am struggling with.

I’ve been on a digital decluttering mission the last several weeks and I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. And one the things I’m most excited about that’s come out of this organizing project is a better way to structure my digital file storage using the P.A.R.A. method, developed by Tiago Forte. This framework helped me see connect the dots with my own preferences for creating: I do better with following through on my goals when I give myself projects that have clear starting and stopping points, with a plan for getting them done. As opposed to something like “paint every day.”

So I’m excited to see what my next creative projects become! And it feels good to have my various blogs wrangled together into one home base, which is something that I wasn’t exactly looking to do, but it just popped up one day as something that needed to happen.