Art, the very essence of my being, flows through my veins like the need to breathe. It is an intrinsic part of who I am as an artist.
Without the act of painting, I feel a restlessness that settles deep within me. Even during the busiest weeks, I strive to carve out moments for my art— whether it means rising early or staying up late into the night.
It is a compulsion, a calling that cannot be ignored.
As a child, my artistic inclinations were evident from an early age. In fact, I remember secretly sketching on surfaces I shouldn't have, painstakingly repainting the hand-painted flowers on my bedroom wallpaper. However, I always wondered if my parents ever discovered my covert artistic endeavours, as I don't recall being reprimanded for them.
In my third year of primary school, I encountered a teacher who ignited my passion for art. Flamboyant and boisterous, he embraced creativity and encouraged us to explore our artistic talents. One particular assignment stands out vividly. It was an apple painting competition. I recall pouring my heart and soul into each and every brushstroke, believing in the merit of my work. Yet, to my dismay, I did not emerge as the victor. I struggled to comprehend the difference between the winning apple and my paintings. I made countless attempts in my despair, creating new renditions and seeking the teacher's validation. Unfortunately, his response remained consistent:
"It's good, but not as good as Lisa's." It felt as if my world had shattered.
Years passed, and the fear of painting apples clung to me like a shadow. I convinced myself that I could not capture such a subject and resigned myself to the notion that still-life paintings of apples or fruit bowls were beyond my reach.
In fact, it wasn't until recent years that I mustered the courage to confront my phobia head-on. In the art classes I would teach, I assisted fellow artists in overcoming their creative obstacles, supporting them in their pursuit of self-belief. But how could I inspire them to recognise their artistic worth if I doubted my own abilities?
Watch this video below by Brenner Fine Art, if you would like to learn how to paint an apple
I realised that I needn't seek validation from others or expose my work to their judgments. My plan was simple—to create the apple painting for myself, to hide it away, or even burn it if I deemed it unworthy. And so, I embarked on the journey, uncertain of the outcome.
Surprisingly, it turned out more than okay; it became my most cherished creation. It now holds a place of honour within my personal collection, displayed proudly in my home. Most importantly, I have detached myself from the opinions of others. It is my treasure, a symbol of self-love, appreciation, and the joy of creation.
The painting, titled "Not A Still Life with Red Apples," was bestowed the honour of being the featured artwork for the New Zealand Artists Calendar in 2021. It is a testament to my personal growth and the triumph over self-doubt.
Art, my dear friends, is an ever-evolving journey. The more we immerse ourselves in its depths, the more our skills will flourish. It is a constant pursuit of improvement, a testament to the power of dedication and practice. So let us embrace this beautiful endeavour and revel in the boundless potential of our artistic souls.
The main picture on here is titled "Not A Still Life with Red Apples" and was the featured artwork for the New Zealand Artists Calendar 2021
Posted: Friday 12 March 2010