Archive for abstracts

When the Spirit Moves You

Posted in Acrylics, art, How to Paint, inspiration, Painting with tags , , , , on September 24, 2017 by sebland


An interesting thing about artists, I have observed, is that they learn over time to go with the flow. When I began this painting as a demo at a workshop, I planned a Georgia O’Keefe type red blossom, sort of “in your face” with a black center and a beige background. I even blocked it in and stood back admiring my work. I didn’t like it even a little bit! So I painted over it with gesso and began to let my muse take over. First I felt the rolling waves, then the wind pushing the clouds around. Suddenly these little spirits appeared and I just relaxed and enjoyed the process. I don’t know where these figures come from or why. I just have learned to greet them with joy. I call this one “Rebirth” it appears on my daily works page at, under my S. E. Bland paint name.

Waiting For a Brighter Day

Posted in Acrylics, art, inspiration, Painting with tags , , , , , , on September 8, 2017 by sebland

image.jpegFor an artist, a bad mood can morph into a fair painting. I have been in a snit for a couple of days. Things have not gone my way and like a moody kid, I’ve wanted to crawl in the bed and pull the covers over my head. For a little while I’ve enjoyed my own pity party and wondered why nobody brought me presents. After a while it occurred to me things could have been much worse. In fact the things bothering me were largely in my head. I let problems grow much larger than they should have, and fertilized that garden of doubt with organic thoughts. Then I remembered a couple of years ago when I broke my arm in two places. Determined to paint anyway, I did a series called “The Broken Wing Series,” and I think some pretty neat work evolved. Maybe like me you have a tendency to make mountains out of molehills. If you tend to get down in the dumps and stay there, I recommend you find a quiet spot and start counting your blessings. Life’s not always a bed of roses, but there’s generally a bright spot to be found, if you look for it. And almost always a friend who cares. For that I am most grateful.

The Voices We Hear

Posted in Acrylics, art, How to Paint, Painting, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on September 2, 2017 by sebland

image.jpegI am very sad to confess that despite painting for twenty years, I still worship at the feet of the God of Not Good Enough. Over and over I advise my students to trust their instincts, to listen to the positive thoughts encouraging them and to ignore others who throw out discouraging words. That is good advice and I wish I’d committed it to memory. I ran across this painting recently and I thought, “Wow!” “What happened to this one?” Then I remembered. I was in a dark place and someone made a remark that enforced my doubts. I reacted quickly and painted over this. Granted the painting that replaced it was a very nice one, and I’m proud of it. I may have never thought of this one if I hadn’t browsed through old photographs. For some reason when it popped up I regretted my decision to lose it. It might have been a really neat piece. Instead it fell victim to the NGE monster. I let my lack of self confidence make my decision for me. I hope that doesn’t happen to you. Whatever you are painting, singing, writing, thinking, it’s yours! It has value! Give yourself permission to appreciate your own work! It has value because it is yours! Don’t let someone else set your value. You are you and there is nobody else like you. That the plan. Own it.

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