I was watching a college football game yesterday. Every time a player made an athletically brilliant play – they celebrated. They danced, spiked the ball, high-fived, and chest bumped. All that celebrating got me to thinking.
What does a plein air painter do when it all goes well?
What do you do when it all goes well? When your colors are amazing and your warms feel warmer, your cools feel cooler, and you can paint no wrong. What do you do?
We typically paint alone and when it all comes together, there usually isn’t anyone to celebrate with. It’s not like we are going to run up to complete strangers and high five them (especially when your hand is full of oil paint.) Nor are we going to spike our canvas to the ground (although when things go horribly awry we are oft-tempted to do so).
I think the best thing we, as plein air artists, can do is celebrate the moment with the same intensity of one of those football players. I’ve been known to raise my hands in victory or shout an “amen” or two. Why not? It’s not like the trees or the woodland creatures mind.
Admittedly, I’m more reserved if folks are nearby but I’ll still find a way to celebrate. Sometimes it is just an ear to ear grin. Or maybe I take a photo of the painting and text my wife. Someone to share the moment with.
I don’t think athletes are the only ones who get to show a little emotion during their day job. Painters can too. Now if you work in an office…
Onwards and Sideways,