Lessons Learned From My Art Fast

Today marks one week of not looking at other people’s art.*

It has been both harder and easier than I thought. If I didn’t think about art, it was easy to go whole days without looking. But it was also harder when you had to remind yourself that you couldn’t read your favorite art blog, or couldn’t get on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, or any other platform where you might accidentally see art.

But what did I learn from the art fast? Did I achieve my goal?

The first lesson is that a week is not long enough to reconnect with your own muse. I can still conjure up an image in my mind of paintings I’ve seen, so when I run into a problem it’s still too easy to look for solutions outside of my own path. I also wonder if my muse is waiting to see how committed I am to following its guidance.

The second lesson is, if you don’t work enough on your own art, the art fast is a waste of time. I sketched and jotted down ideas this week but I didn’t actually focus on creating any specific artwork. I feel I could have gotten more out of it if I had set a schedule to draw or paint something a little more finished.

So, did I reach my goal? No, I don’t feel I have been able to completely untangle my path from all the other ones out there, but I have a feeling that if I fast a little longer, and more often, my path will shine so bright that I will wonder how I ever lost it.


* Or mostly not looking at art. I had one more slip up when I read an article that linked to an artist’s portfolio, but I caught myself after looking at only a few paintings.

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