I started taking art classes when I got into high school, but my art experience did not start there. My first memory with any form of medium was a crayon and a coloring book. We had just arrived at Disney World where I sat on the ground of our hotel room with my sister. Gross I know, the thought of me sitting on a hotel room floor makes me cringe but I was a child so it was probably the safest surface to be against with a crayon.
My sister was a huge role model for me in the art world, although she was my biggest critic even as a child. We colored in my coloring book and she would tell me, “You are doing it wrong, you are supposed to color inside the lines.” Granted I was four at the time so what did that matter to me. Growing up I wanted to be just as good an artist as she was. She took many art classes in college, at this time I would have been in elementary school. She would bring me home things she had drawn or made me with clay. That is where my passion for art came from.
Although painting was my own thing. Yes, I wanted to be like my older sister, but I also wanted to have my own medium that I was great at. I chose to paint because I loved the vibrant colors and the way you could manipulate them on different surfaces. Being able to freehand was one of my strong suits because that was all I did before I had access to paint. You can get your hands on a pencil and paper anywhere, but painting was more difficult when you were in elementary or middle school and couldn’t drive yourself to the store to go buy all the supplies you needed.
Once I started my painting classes I hit the ground running. Our art teacher gave us a lot of freedom with what we chose to paint but my personal favorite was the very last project I did. I used acrylic paint to paint my dad a deer in the snow. I found an image he had captured with his deer camera and tried to recreate it. The process included free handing the deer with a pencil, and then painting it as accurately as I could.
For me, painting is very therapeutic. Once I get into a zone I can mindlessly work when I want to and just listen along with my music or a podcast. It also gives me time to just peacefully be in my head to think about upcoming events in my life or anything for that matter. If you have not tried the painting process before, I highly recommend it. You never know what it might unfold.