Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Rules of Art Making

 Self Discovery (2011) 
11" X 7"Mixed Media on Heavy Paper
by Harmony Lenasbunt

I am working on letting go and enjoying the art process these days.  Lately, I've been watching videos and studying works of other artists in their art making process, and have come to realize that in stark contrast to what I see others do, I've been painting under extreme pressure and expectation.  I haven't really given myself space and permission to make mistakes and just create for the FUN of it and not with the intention of making it sell-able (which always sucks the fun out of it).  It's really hard to find yourself in the painting process that way.  So in attempt to release myself from my self-made oppressive rules of art making, I am creating new rules...ones designed and intended to free up my process and allow discovery instead of frustration.  So far I only have 4 rules but its a good start.

RULE 1: Stop Thinking!! Clear your mind, reject the idea that this piece will have meaning or purpose for anything else than to bring you JOY!

RULE 2: Be MESSY!  The more ordered and systematic you try to be with your art, the more it controls you.

RULE 3: Always Stop Before You Think You're Finished!  You always try to make it "better" but you end up over working and over thinking the piece until you have smothered it's spirit.

RULE 4: HAVE FUN! Keep checking in with yourself... are you still loving the process, or are you getting frustrated because its not turning out how you wanted?  If you find that it feels like you are fighting with the art, throw the piece out or put away where you cant see it and start on something new. 

What are your Rules for your Creative Play?


  1. My rules are: have no rules!!!! A great a to assess your painting is to turn it upside down, or on it's side, you really do see things much clearer... Collecting colours that work well together and sticking them down like an ideas board can sometimes give you somewhere to start... and i always put on music and start covering canvas', with no idea where I'm going or what I will put on top, I love what appears. Making art to sell DOES take the soul from your paintings- and you. But it's a great learning process along the way! Good luck XX

  2. I love your latest painting it is yummy, good enough to eat!!

  3. creating under pressure is just a whole different thing, isn't it.
    love your new rules!

  4. I feel the exact same way. Thanks for the great post. I needed it.

  5. Just wanted to say how much i love this piece, and i think your style is really beautiful!

    I'm currently studing my art A-levels, the pressure and stress of it all was really getting to me untill i found your post, it's helped me find that creative spot inside me that seems to get buried when i have dealines and restrictions, and i've just realised how much it really has effected my work.

    So thankyou for your inspiring post, it's really helped me!! (:


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