Why is it so hard to paint and WHY do I do it?

First question: what is it that makes painting so hard? I don’t really know, but every time I start on something new, I have the same helpless feeling. Painting in oil also requires patience; at times you have to wait until the paint dries. Vaclav Havel said creating is having to wait. You cannot pull a sprouting seed from the ground – you will inevitably kill it. The waiting is often painful because you want to quickly pass from the crude beginning to a more refined level, but having to wait and helplessly watch the rough beginning easily harms your self confidence. And this is just the beginning of why it is so hard to paint…

And why do I do it? Is it to earn praise and admiration from my peers? Is it to sell paintings and make money? Is it to have fancy exhibitions in the nicest galleries or museums? Is it to be remebered after my death?
I have asked myself this question countless times and I am not sure what the answer is, but lately some events have caused me to ask myself this question more earnestly, and I can honestly say that I paint because I love to do it, even if it is really hard and I repeatedly knock myself and doubt my ability and talent (if I have one?). When I look at works I have completed in the past, I am challenged by myself: I want to do it again, do it better. I can admire a single brushstroke, watch how the paint has done the job, be amazed at how I was able to catch the light or a detail, and wonder if I can ever do it again. When I want to paint it is sometimes very hard to get started, but then, when I am in the process, time just passes in a moment… I simply can’t help but paint. I am very fortunate and thankful to have the freedom to do what I love.

Right now I am working on four small paintings, each is 24 x 8 cm.

The result of two days of work, not much to brag about…

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