If you have ever created anything more complex than a stick figure, you have probably been asked this common question, “How long did it take to paint that?”
This seemingly simple question can actually be complex for the artist to answer. For me, each painting seems to have a mind of its own, with its own personality. Literally, some paintings paint themselves, while others are a slow, and more labor intensive. Self-employed artists work hard, but we are lucky; we don’t have to punch a time clock. I have never recorded the time spent on one single painting.
In a world that is moving faster and faster with instant gratification at our fingertips, many art buyers are still accustomed to equating the worth of your product by calculating the time spent on creating it. It seems logical, for if you have spent months in the studio laboring on a single painting, shouldn’t that painting be worth more than the little plein air study you spontaneously painted while spending only an hour in the field?
The truth is this, ART in all its forms including writing, poetry, sculpture, painting, music, design, photographing, and more is an accumulation of knowledge. Each painting, novel, poem or photograph is the embodiment of the artist’s lifelong experiences, emotions, education, and intuition. For me, how long did it take, can be easily encapsulated, calculated and condensed into a simple answer…
This is what I say, “A lifetime, this painting took a lifetime to paint.” ~Lori
(“Aspen Dance” ©2011 LMcNee)
***What do you say when you are asked this question? Please share your thoughts in the comment section. Oh, it would be great to meet on Twitter and Facebook and Google Plus! ~Lori (If you want to see what I paint, please check out my paintings)
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