2020 marks a huge shift in direction

Photo of Garak painting by Jim W Coleman

After many, many years and many, many pen-and-ink originals drawn, I finally came to the point where I was ready to commit to something I've been thinking about for years. I'm emptying my ink pens, reconfiguring my art studio and venturing into the world of painting.

I can't tell you how scary this is for me. I've not really painted since doing paint-by-numbers as a kid. The few times I've tried to paint since have been a disaster. But what's even more frightening to me is that I know this change in focus will require that I completely start over - literally from scratch. I figure it will take a year or two before I really start to feel comfortable with it and start producing some quality work. That's two long years of producing no new pen-and-ink work. I can't remember how long it's been since I haven't had a pen-and-ink original on my art table.

I have no idea how to paint. I don't know what techniques I should use or what equipment I should buy. But I'm figuring it out.

Photo of art table in art studio

To start, I took an online class in watercolor. I learned a LOT. And I produced this, my first real painting! The subject is Garak, the Cardassian tailor from Deep Space Nine. I always knew this would be my first attempt at painting and I held off from drawing it in pen and ink. I'm reasonably happy with the result - suprised, even. I honestly thought it would come out far worse. It's passable. But I have a lot to learn. I would never consider this to be a marketable piece of work. But producing unmarketable work is what will be required to develop the skills and techniques I will need. I'm hanging on to this. Five years from now, I will redo the exact same artwork to see how I've developed over time.

Meanwhile, I'm taking other online classes now and doing many exercises with oil paints. I'm also working out with my airbrush setup adn experimenting with different paints, different brushes, etc.

I'll post more from time to time as I continue. My hope is that the efforts I'm making now will reap huge dividends down the road but I can't think about that right now. All I can do is focus on painting boring balls, boring pears, boring gradient scales, etc. etc. etc. And from those, taking what I learn to perfect my technique as I strive to expand my horizons and add diversity to my portfolio. Wish me luck. :)