“How do I find my style?” is a question I get asked from time to time. The easy answer to finding your style – which is really your artistic voice – is to paint, to do the work. But is it really that easy? I’ve put some thought into this question and created this video to give you some ideas and tips on the ‘finding your style’ journey.
For quick reference, here are the 10 tips I mention in the video for finding your style.
- Know Thy Tools
- Practise Technique
- Understand Basic Painting Principles
- Practise Drawing
- Take Workshops and Classes
- Explore Different Subjects, Different Palettes
- Take Risks
- Let One Piece Emerge From The Last
- Be Curious About the World
- Look at Art Through the Ages
I mention in the video that your style is constantly evolving. I had a style when I first started working in pastels. Part of the style was dictated by my technique and part by my materials (I was working on mat board).
Here are some pastel landscapes showing how I was working about 20 years ago.
I then took a couple workshops and it was the one that I took with Doug Dawson that really transformed the way I worked. Here’s an example of a piece I did soon after his workshop. This was when I began working in layers of colour.
And here are examples of more recent landscapes. These two were created for the DK book, Artists Drawing Techniques.
More recently, along with work from direct observation, I’ve been playing around with abstracting the figure and the landscape, and creating more in conversation with the painting.
Here are two examples of that.
So you see, style evolves as you yourself grow from life experienced. Sometimes a place of comfort becomes uncomfortable in its familiarity and you yearn to break out and do something else. So do it! An example of an artist who did that was Arlene Richman. You can read her guest blog which shows her the transformation of her style (it may surprise you!).
One of the things I didn’t mention in the video was that you may already have a style. Viewers might recognize it before you do. They see a piece by you and already know it’s yours. Ever had that happen? Then you have your style!!
That’s it for this time. I’d love to hear from you. Have you found your style? Are there any tips you’d like to share about finding your style? Please leave a comment!
Until next time,