There are a lot of books about painting – how to, what to use, what to buy – but not a lot inspire. I found one: Ted Keller’s Watercolor: One Person’s Teachings on Watercolor Painting and Becoming an Artist. Why is he inspirational? Because he says to paint 100 paintings to learn how to paint; paint 300 paintings to develop your style. And that says it all. If I sit around waiting to become a painter, it ain’t gonna happen.
Hence: enumeration. I’ve decided that my paintings / drawings should be numbered. I want to see what I have at 100 paintings, and then 300. Numbering things is a way to mark progress. Numbering is a way to organize. I like numbering things because I have a secret fetish to count some things. For instance, when I bake, I count to 100 when I mix batter by hand. When I knead bread, it’s 1-2-3-4 turn. That way, I stay focused on my task rather than letting my monkey mind get distracted and unfocused. When I jogged, I did the same thing to set a pace, increasing or decreasing the count of 1-2-3-4 with speed.
Numbering things may seem sort of dorky when it comes to painting or drawing, but it really is a way to mark the passage of time (how old are you?) and growth. It’s a road map, a guide, a way to see the journey, just as is this blog.