Friday, October 8, 2010

67 Breaking a mental block

OCCASIONALLY I get a mental block and find it difficult to paint. Sometimes this will be caused by attempting a painting I imagine will be especially challenging, or a deadline that seems to take the fun out of painting. But whatever the cause I don’t enjoy those fallow periods especially when they stretch out too long. So what is a painter to do? One of the most useful methods is to simply make a list of each step of the painting precess. If there are challenges to the motif I can isolate my concerns. Making a list also helps simplify the process and by doing so I realize I have nothing to fear. I hope this video will help you break those aggravating, but inevitable, mental blocks.

Brad Teare © 2010


  1. I am currently experiencing a mental block. Thanks for the suggestions!

  2. I get mental blocks all the time. My most recent one went on for years in relation to Photoshop as a tool. I finally think I broke out of it with the latest magazine cover I did (you know, that one)I fought through it by making a commitment to just use the tool and learn the process. Sometimes I think we as artists "over think" and under execute. When that happens, I try to simply get to work and not worry. Whatever hangup or uncertainty I have usually works itself out in the process.

  3. Greg, mental blocks can definitely be a problem. My mental block started when I botched a 36" x 36" painting. It didn't help that I thought the painting was going to be a masterpiece. But I find if I can push through the block my mistakes are as educational as the successes. Failed paintings are not a problem. The real problem is not painting.

    As always thanks for your comments!

  4. Brad

    Another excellent video. I will keep your mental block suggestions well in mind as I undertake a large oil painting. I feel great trepidation about this looming work, because it is one of those primary vision pictures that I've had in my head for years. I was determined to paint a realistic picture involving two figures, just the way I have been 'seeing' it for so long. But I simply can't find the models for it, or afford to pay them anyhow. So, it's going to be done from imagination. The linen support and preliminary sketches have already changed the concept radically. But I either do it this way or not at all. Your advice to take it one step at a time must be heeded now. I have some notion of what to do next, so it will just have to unfold from one next to the next next. Thanks for your new video. It's always a good connection for me to see what you are struggling with.

  5. Neato lesson Brad. Cool get down music too. I forgot your a thick painter and when I saw this I said wow, lots of paint, cool textures. Then I saw what I'm guessing is the little yellow Jeep. Just reminded me of a painting I did call, what else, "Little Jeep".


  6. Good to see a new post, Brad. I am totally with you when it comes to overcoming panic mode and having fun as well as the mental block problem. I am delivering paintings in a week for a show and have been going through my own angst about it as time grows near. This helps! Good job, I always love to see your paint application!


Thanks for your comments!


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