50+ and growing pains…

Isn’t there a saying about “teaching an old dog, new tricks or there’s no fool, like an old fool”…with saying like these who wants to admit they’re still learning about themselves after 50?! Maybe that’s why many of us pretend that we have it all together. Well, I know, I don’t  have it all together, and I’m not pretending to either!

My art still teaches me more about myself daily. I’ve just completed one of two recent commissions.   This painting was a challenge on many levels:

  • Self-imposed time constraints
  • I don’t usually do pet portraits
  • my perfectionist nature and my lack of experience in pet portraits had my critical self (aka “Grimlette”) conspiring against me.
  • illness…the flu

Yet I am so happy that it is completed and I’m very proud of myself for not giving up. I’ve learned some valuable lessons about myself during this process:

  • be true to your artistic process
  • there will always be obstacles
  • I still really don’t like doing pet portraits
  • I enjoyed challenging myself in an area unexplored
  • I enjoy making others happy
  • I work better with a to-do list
  • I am totally human and I’d better get used to it! :)

Hope’s Snow

 I’ve missed being in the studio, creating paintings and it feels good to be back; it’s where I’m most happiest and most challenged. At 54, it feels good to still be open to learning more about myself and changing in spite of myself.  This will be my first painting going to Russia!

What lessons are you still learning?

20 Comments »
  1. Awww that's a great lookin' doggie Indigene! As soon as I saw it I got all excited because well I am a dog lover and I love to do animal portraits, though I've gotten away from them because this was my comfort zone. I've learned that it's real important to get out of your comfort zone. That's where I learn. Getting older is getting wiser and happier, with a life full of learning that keeps you young and better!

    Comment by Catherine Meyers — February 7, 2013 @ 9:00 am

  2. Thank you Catherine! I'm always so amazed at other artists who paint beautiful things that I'm not accustomed to painting! There is so much technical expertise in doing pet portraits, I applaud you for doing and loving them! :)

    Comment by Indigene — February 7, 2013 @ 11:31 am

  3. SO exciting , your first painting going to Russia!

    Comment by Catherine Meyers — February 7, 2013 @ 9:04 am

  4. Thank you so much Catherine! :)

    Comment by Indigene — February 7, 2013 @ 11:32 am

  5. Beautiful, Indigene!

    Comment by Amy O'Toole — February 7, 2013 @ 10:20 am

  6. Thank you Amy, it means a lot to me to have you say so! :)

    Comment by Indigene — February 7, 2013 @ 11:33 am

  7. Thank you for sharing this. It reminds me of my own challenges, but also things I can celebrate! Love to you. Celebrating you.

    Comment by lynda — February 7, 2013 @ 1:56 pm

  8. Thank you Lynda, for your wonderful friendship and continued support! You're so amazing!

    Comment by indigene1 — February 7, 2013 @ 6:24 pm

  9. This is wonderful. I love animals – dogs in particular – and I love how well you've captured that happiness and smile unique to dogs. Terrific!

    Comment by Carla — February 7, 2013 @ 7:48 pm

  10. Carla, thank you so much! :) There are just some dogs that look like they're just beaming with happiness and they make me happy just looking at them! Pets add quality to our lives. Thank you again!

    Comment by indigene1 — February 8, 2013 @ 1:41 am

  11. Oh MY! Oh oh oh MY! What? You don't enjoy doing pet portraits??? But…but…but… this is so FABULOUS! Oh, Indigene, what a gorgeous painting! I absolutely love it, and it's not even my dog. Hooray for taking on a challenge and excelling in every possible way. You are absolutely awesome.

    And if you meet me in the alley later, I have some ding dongs for you. Hahaha, you cracked me up!

    Comment by Bella Sinclair — February 10, 2013 @ 7:07 pm

  12. Bella, LOL! Thank you so much! What I have realized is that I enjoyed being able to create this for someone as a gift. Seeing and hearing the joy that this painting gave brought me to tears.

    As far as the "ding dongs" are concerned, I think my husband and daughter will be coming after you, since I haven't brought my addiction up in a while, well, just yesterday, I was begging for them again!!! LMBO! I need 'em baaaadddd! :)

    Sending you lots of love!

    Comment by indigene1 — February 10, 2013 @ 7:16 pm

  13. Wonderful, wonderful painting! Your sense of color always gets me, and it's great to see you applying it in this kind of subject — though I'm with you and don't like doing pet portraits either. Even so, this strikes me as a piece you grew with, and I love it. Yay for you!!

    Comment by Linda Hensley — February 11, 2013 @ 8:41 am

  14. Linda, thank you so much!!! Wow, your encouragement made my day! :)

    Comment by indigene1 — February 11, 2013 @ 1:30 pm

  15. I love your Husky portrait! It is super original! (The dog on my blog is a Samoyed. Mine's a mutt! :) )

    Comment by 99magpies — February 15, 2013 @ 3:35 pm

  16. Thanks so much Andrea! I think I'm in love with that Samoyed! :)

    Comment by indigene1 — February 15, 2013 @ 11:04 pm

  17. Beautiful painting Indigene. I also don't have it all together and I'm the exact same age as you. There are many days that I feel where I am only beginning to learn about myself. Right now taking an art class is doing just that for me, teaching me many lessons about myself in the process. I'm so happy to see you figuring all of this out for yourself. :)

    Comment by suzannemcrae — February 15, 2013 @ 4:36 pm

  18. Thank you for stopping by and commenting Suzanne! After almost (12) years, I still feel I'm on the tip of the iceberg; which is great, because it's guaranteed to hold my interest for the rest of my life. Now that's some passion! I'm looking forward to all the amazing things that will be coming out of your creativity. :)

    Comment by indigene1 — February 15, 2013 @ 11:02 pm

  19. Dear Indigene!!!!

    I’m mother of that girl for whom you painted this picture! I say to you great THANKS!!!!

    My daughter is happy to receive this…. she likes it very very much! and, the place where she is doing this dog-sleds-sport is called “Nothern Hope!”

    So….. your picture is a treasure for us! and we will keep it carefully!
    thank you very much!

    Comment by Masha — April 17, 2013 @ 7:09 am

  20. Dear Masha,

    I'm so happy that you both love it! As an artist, that means so much to me! I didn't know the place where your daughter raced the dogs was named "Northern Hope", so I guess it is karma, that I named it that and the metal around the dogs neck, says, "Hope!" ! :)

    I would love to see a picture of your daughter and the painting, which would warm my heart! :) :)

    I hope she enjoys the painting for years! You have made my day! Thank you! :)

    Comment by Indigene — April 17, 2013 @ 8:36 am

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