The Artist’s Life Blog

The Artist’s Life is one of the most well-loved blogs on Artist Daily. It is where you’ll find artists, instructors, and writers sharing what’s on their minds as they go about their creative lives in the studio. From discussions on how paints come from stardust (!) to how to work through your moods in your art, the Artist’s Life proves that a day in the life of an artist is a one-of-a-kind experience filled with fun exploration and insights into the creative process.

Peonies in Provencal Pitcher, 12 x 16", Oil, © Ann Trusty

On Beauty

What is beauty, and why is it so important to us as human beings and as a society? It is a fascinating and endlessly debated question. There is no single, easily tweetable answer to that question. Being an irreducible intangible has its advantages, kind of like the question, What is Art? The deep and profound…

Photographs Showing Orange Bounce Light on Left PitcherPhotographs Showing Orange Bounce Light on Left Pitcher

Bounce Light

“Speaking, when you have something to say, is like looking. But who looks? If people could see properly, and see whole, they would all be painters. And it’s because people have no idea how to look that they hardly ever understand.” – Pierre Bonnard When we teach classes indoors, we often set up a very…

Hesitant by Dominic Avant, oil painting.

The Realities of a Fine Art Career–Dominic Avant

A Short Talk with Dominic Avant The Ninth in an Artist Daily Exclusive Series: The Realities of Fine Art as a Career Hesitant by Dominic Avant, oil painting. What did you find most surprising about being a full-time painter? Even if you can just paint, expect a demanding work schedule. Becoming a full time artist…

4035.photo.jpg

The Stress Before the Breakthrough

Recently, I found myself experiencing a great deal of stress before an event where I was to paint live, before an audience. Painting in front of a crowd is not new for me, and the stress before the event isn’t, either! Time and time again, I have all kind of preparations to make in addition…

Lost Horizons by David Neil Mack, watercolor painting.

The Realities of a Fine Art Career–David Neil Mack

A Moment with David Neil Mack The Eighth in an Artist Daily Exclusive Series: The Realities of Fine Art as a Career Lost Horizons by David Neil Mack, watercolor painting. What did you find most surprising about being a full-time painter? Suddenly you are faced with making decisions about what you’re doing–just to avoid spinning…

2234.Nympheas_2D00_reflets_324D00_b-380x270

The Eyes Have It

We can never imagine a world without vision. Whether one works as a realist painter or abstract artist, the quality of our vision determines the ultimate appearance of the art that we make. As viewers of art, we can rarely know or consider if the art we are looking at is meant to be expressive…

Oliver II by John Hulsey, watercolor painting.

Stick or Ball?

We have a new puppy and this is his first spring. Being old dogs ourselves, we marvel at his excitement about every new little thing he sees or smells. We are teaching him to retrieve a ball – throwing the ball for him to catch and return. He is joyful and interested, chasing and returning…

The Studio by Carl Larsson, watercolor painting, 1895.

Let There Be Light!

Learning to see as an artist is perhaps a lifelong task, requiring countless hours of observation, comparison and reproduction of our real life subjects. This is a particularly critical process when it comes to analyzing and matching color, and the practice over time can’t be shortcut. If one is going to invest a great deal…

Moonlight by Ilya Repin, 1896.

Creative Insomnia

“If the insomnia of a musician allows him to create beautiful pieces, it is a beautiful insomnia.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Common experience informs most of us that sleep is essential for insightful and creative thinking during waking hours. Beyond common knowledge, scientific studies confirm that, in particular, REM sleep enhances creative problem solving. A…

Knitter's Gift by Adam Clague, 30 x 30, oil painting.

The Realities of a Fine Art Career–Adam Clague

A Few Minutes with Adam Clague The Seventh in an Artist Daily Exclusive Series: The Realities of Fine Art as a Career What did you find most surprising about being a professional painter? How far ahead I have to plan my calendar to keep up the necessary momentum. If I wait until my last scheduled…

Sunset at Etretat by George Inness, 1875.

The Artist’s Road

One of the many wonderful benefits of being an artist married to another artist is the rich ongoing conversation about all things art. Having been artists for so many decades, we’ve gained a long-range perspective on the twists and turns of artist’s road. We have been discussing lately the interesting pendulum swings that take place…

Supernova photographed by NASA.

The Color Theory of Stardust

“Thou canst not stir a flower, without troubling of a star.”  – Francis Thompson The most common pigment on earth is red ochre. It is also the oldest known natural pigment. We see it along with carbon from charcoal in the cave paintings of the late stone age, like those at Lascaux. Unlike colors made…