Thursday, October 20, 2011


This page is... so many things into one! A pretty cool doodle turned... interesting when I started applying watercolours to it...

First of all, I don't know where my mind was when I chose the colours, but it wasn't on pleasing, that's for sure! What happens when you're just doing while listening elsewhere, I guess :)
And secondly, perfect proof of the fact that I don't really know what I'm doing with those watercolours, quite yet! I was fine on run-of-the-mill (80 gsm) paper! I mean, it didn't work properly, of course, but I could just blame it on the paper! Now that I'm using the real stuff, paperwise, it's me. I don't know how to stop the stuff from staining, striping, cauliflowering & whatever else you want to call what can go wrong with this paint ;)

It's a learning curve, on many counts. I need to keep at it and practise on filling large spaces with a consistent wash. I need to re-learn the lesson that it's okay if not everything turns out the way I plan it, even when I set out to create something that's supposed to rock. Meaning I need to regain controll of my inner mean dude. Shut him up. Whatever he says, it's hardly ever appropriate!

I'm doing a course. Creative Courage, with Stephanie Levy. It's beautiful, she knows so much and she's sharing freely and thoughtfully. But it's also... quite daunting, to me. I am surrounded by so many incredibly talented artists who are already selling their products, and I feel... out of place. Not good enough. A beginner - and not in the Buddhist sense where it can be so beneficial ;)

I'm comparing while knowing I shouldn't, I keep measuring myself and coming up short. Who am I kidding?! It's one thing to overcome your inner critic when you're putting your own thoughts into your own images, essentially for yourself; it's quite another when you're contemplating - merely imagining! - that some day, someone might want to pay for something you make!

I'm stuck, at the moment. Stuck in can't, shouldn't, must!, who am I kidding?!, not nearly good enough!; inner mean dude ramblings. I know the only answer is pushing through. Perseverance. Daring to wish for myself. Soul searching, bridge-building, handstands and chocolate. Especially chocolate...

This painting is a metaphor. Of how colourblind I can get. How stuck. And how I keep at it, nonetheless. I think it deserves to be framed and hung, just for that!

What do you do to overcome yourself & shut up that inner critic?

p.s. If anyone has tips on washing a great white space around complex structures (haha), I'll be so grateful, I might not send you a print of this... beauty :)


  1. Fabulous authentic post! I will be as honest with you as you have been with us.
    This artwork is ....


    I LOVE the complementary colors, it's zest, bubbliness, movement, the fab composition of the mushrooms, stones and flowers.. this is a HAPPY painting.. then you made it sad... and your soul sad .. by listening to someone who knows nothing about freedom and creative expression..
    the linear mind.. it is here for analyzing and keeping you away from areas it does not understand, where you could get hurt. So it will squash your brave little shoot seeking to bloom in the light.

    Water and nurture your own unique brand of creativity.. be grateful for it .. it is your soul speaking , sharing to the world. It is the voice who prods you to eagerly get out your paints and get going , not wasting another minute!! with you happily KNOWING you can do this , that you MUST do this .. until the linear mind comes along and says " what the heck is going on here? "

    Open your etsy store , this is your first piece to go in it.. show your soul you trust your own voice and are honoring it.
    Sales can take time , just keep filling up the store and love your work .. as if you don't how can others? We ALL have to work on shutting up this voice .. here is one I wrote march last year

    Some watercolor artists use the 'cauliflowering' as part of their signature style, embrace it as the beauty of watercolor.. this is not acrylic.

    you can also try flooding the area with a little water first to allow the color to flow easier, try a bigger brush , try a different brand of paint.. or celebrate it , as a feature of watercolor.. I personally LOVE IT!

    You rock.. we have ALL been there , still do , I just get better at tying up my mind with a big ol' ball of string!! and a gag!! haha!
    Lots of love , Helen

  2. trying that link again if it doesn't work.. it's
    march 2010 Coming to my own rescue with creative honesty..:)

  3. Wow,
    Helen put it beautifully. And YOU, Yvonne, are such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability. I think that's one of the best ways to quiet that dang self-doubt. To be honest with it. To shine a light on it. To be real. To admit it's there (we all have it from time-to-time). So let it out, release it and DO IT anyway. I have found that action (while surrounding yourself with supportive people) have been some of the best ways for me to move beyond my inner critic. The more I take healthy action and do it anyway despite the voices, the quieter that voice seems to become. does come back, but NO, I will not let it keep me from living my fullest life. And neither are you. So keep on painting, girl. Your "doodles" are BEAUTIFUL, happy and YOU. xo

  4. Ik vind m erg mooi, inderdaad een heel coole doodle, en van je verfproblemen zie ik niks (ben dan ook geen kenner ;-)) ik vind het gewoon mooi en ik hou van kleuren :-)
    Alles goed met Squirt ? Liefs :-)

  5. I love your colorful doodle! And I like the way the watercolor ‘blotches’. It’s the nature of the beast and what makes it an interesting medium.
    As far as silencing the inner critic, if you can come up with a permanent solution you’ll be a millionaire! We all face ‘him’ at times and it always sucks! LOL I’m sure even ‘the greats’ had their moments of doubt too. I guess the answer is we just keep going because we have no other choice. Whether people buy my work or not wouldn’t stop me from making it.

  6. I just love your honesty and openness! I often fight with my inner critic and it usually is the moment I'm thinking about opening my own Etsy store. Will they like it, will someone actually buy it, will they scoff, ignore etc etc. I think we need to just tell that negative voice to SHUT UP! and then keep going. The one thing I've learned in the Creative Courage class is to just keep on doing, jump off that cliff and fly.

    Good luck!

  7. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. We really need to stop those horrible noices in our heads ;-)
    I don't have the answer how to stop them unfortunately. The only thing I can tell you is this: your work is very real, lovely and yours. And that's a great thing! Keep on writing and drawing, I'll keep on looking forward to your posts!

  8. Oh Yvonne! I think we all know how you feel :) maybe we are never satisfied with ourselves...our looks, our bodies, our finances, our art. ? I think it is about time to quiet those voices that tell us we are not enough. I think it is time to talk back to them and say, "Yes I am." And it is time to mean it. I SO appreciate your honesty and willingness to be open and share your innermost thoughts.
    I hope that putting it out and recieving all the feedback does help you realize that you are not alone and that you do have so much to offer! You are very talented and genuine and that is a wonderful mixture! I hope that you will continue on and open your Etsy shop soon. You ARE ready! I love what the others here said and i wholeheartedly agree with Helen. xokp
    Ps. As far as your watercolors...i think your washes look great. All the striping and waterblossoming is part of the beauty of watercolor. Just keep at it ...whatever you're doing looks great :)

  9. Thank you so much Yvonne! I also love your art, and just know that feeling doubtful and overwhelmed is sometimes part of the process. It will get better, and I agree with everyone above who says, just keep painting because your work is lovely! You are not out of place - you are in the right place, and we are so glad to have your lovely presence in our Creative Courage group :) Big hugs from Munich and I hope you are feeling better now! xoxo


Thanks for letting me in on your thoughts!