Why Suffer? Start Over.

“Our job in this lifetime is not to shape ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it.”

-Steven Pressfield, The War of Art


painting cover up
Sometimes you just gotta wipe that slate clean.

As I work on a painting it can sometimes feel like torture. I apply paint, and more paint, and step back for inspection, and step forward to further the attack; and nothing helps. The painting is only getting more boring. By this point my anxiety is keeping pace with the enthusiasm I had initially.

So I hang the painting up on the wall, and at each mealtime I chew my food and stare the painting in the face. I look at its surface and I look at its soul. I wonder how it could be different. I wonder how it could exude all of the charms that I want it to.

After a long wait the painting comes off the wall and back on the easel. I’m ready to give it a second chance. Or is it ready to give me a second chance? Instead of filling the palette with paint and trying to force the same idea through this pathetic period, I decide to start with a clean slate. I apply a coat of gesso to my canvas, erasing almost all of the torture I had previously put in it. It is revitalized and so am I; ready to smile at the start of a new beginning.

And as exciting as it may be to watch paint dry I prefer to remain busy.

Pretzel Ring
This is my new Beer Fest Ring.

This handcrafted pretzel ring is going to look awesome while I hold my enormous beer at the next festival.

Neon Farm House
Neon Farmhouse


And because it doesn’t take all afternoon to make one ring; I also decided to start another painting. It’s a farmhouse in the hills of northern Austria. It’s traditional subject matter dressed in nontraditional clothes. It’s not yet finished, and I vow to not put it through a torturous stage.




2 thoughts on “Why Suffer? Start Over.

  1. sarah j. says:

    i really love the quote. it drew me into the blog post. i’ll carry that with me today and mull over it a bit. also the pretzel ring looks great and just needs a stein to go along with it.

Comments are closed.