Time to get real!

Realistic eye drawing in pencil

Drawing was my first love.

When I rediscovered art a few years ago I fell into grungy mixed media. It was the perfect way for me, a recovering perfectionist, to get back into art. Because grungy, by its very nature, is messy. There is no right or wrong. Back then, drawing would have quickly sucked me into the black hole of perfectionism and my sketchbooks would have been shelved, whereas grunge allowed me to experiment and have fun.

But it’s time to get real. With myself and with my art. 

Grunge isn’t me.

I’m more of a clean and layered kind of girl. Not grungy.

And drawing is still my first love.

It’s time to do the work I feel called to do. It’s time to stop looking for results in work that no longer feels right to me, and concentrate on the work that does, and be grateful for all the lessons I learned along the way.

So my art is changing. I’m finding myself experimenting with cleaner, but still highly layered, mixed media pieces. I’m more intentional about my drawing. My sketchbook is filling up with studies of facial features as I practise a more realistic drawing style, first in graphite, and then, eventually, in coloured pencil. I see many realistic portraits in my future and much else besides.

I’m so excited about the changes I’m making to the way I work. They feel so right. THIS, this is exactly what I’m supposed to be doing right now.

I hope you want to follow along on the journey.

How about you? Have you made any feel good changes lately?


  1. Yay, you! I’m thrilled to read how you’re honoring your heart’s truth!
    Heather Koshiol recently posted…Explore: Mind-Mapping your Vision MapMy Profile

  2. I second that Yay, you! And I love how you said it’s what you should be doing right now. Right now could turn into forever, but acknowledging right now gives us permission to move away from that which no longer feels right, and towards what does. (Note to self: remember that). And maybe exploring the “grunge” is what paved the way back home. I’m constantly seeing this in my own life, and it helps me not get caught up in right or wrong. Maybe there are lots of paths that lead back to home. The point is to find our way back home. I’m glad you’re finding it in your sketches. Also, I remember a post where you acknowledged being hesitant about using colored pencils? Or am I just making that up? Anyway, I was glad to see you mention that here. Yay, you!
    Angie Mizzell recently posted…Name your fear. Then, smash it.My Profile

    • Thanks for the yay. I decided to let my words fall out 🙂

      The rear view mirror is such a great tool. I don’t know how many times I’ve been led down a path that seems to take me further away from my perceived goal, but it does, in fact, bring me closer to home. So I try to be open-minded.

      Yes, I’m very hesitant about coloured pencils, but I feel an urge to learn to use them, so that’s what I’m planning to do. Again- time to be open-minded and go with it.
      Carin recently posted…Time to get real!My Profile

  3. Love that eye. It’s exquisite. Grungy and messy seems to be trendy now but you should only do what you feel called to do!
    Marcia recently posted…Vote for My Art Ed. Blog!My Profile

  4. Paty Shaulis says:

    Carin, I feel the same way! I have tried to be messier but that is not me. It is fun to do those pieces some days but a clean, realistic bird is always so much easier and fun for me to create. Lovely eye, by the way!

  5. What a wonderful post! I LOVE that you are doing what you are called to do – and that you are finding satisfaction in it. I am so in agreement – I remember as a scrapbooker (years ago) I used to be so precise. I swear I would cut several matts for my photos and each would be measured to exact specifications. I crack up now in that it’s the opposite – the non perfection that I crave these days. I purposely try to mess things up – almost as a test for my former perfectionist soul – I love messy now 😉 xoxo
    OH and your eye is amazing – Kendra said so too!
    Kristin Van Valkenburgh recently posted…My Love Affair with Blues & Greens. . .My Profile

  6. I love this so much! Years ago, I LOVED to draw, and my strength was drawing portraits. I abandoned drawing, but within the last year, I bought a couple of drawing books, and I have really wanting to start again. But I haven’t pulled out those books yet! Thanks for the inspiration, and good for you!
    jPam recently posted…It’s My SITS Day!My Profile


  1. […] I decided to teach myself to draw more realistically this year, I divided the year into features. I practise a new one each month. In January, I drew […]

  2. […] love drawing and I am, for the most part, self-taught. Early this year I decided to improve my drawing skills and started practising different facial features each month. I also decided to do a full portrait […]

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