I painted a thing…
I’ve always wanted to learn how to paint.
I’d see these amazing works of art… online, in museums, even in restaurants and friends’ homes… and I’d just wonder. How ON EARTH do they do that?
I tried to recreate that art on my own but I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong, and why I couldn’t get the picture in my head to translate through my fingers onto the canvas.
So I finally stopped trying to figure it out on my own… a couple weeks ago I enrolled in a month-long painting workshop.
Four weeks, Thursday evenings. ONE painting.
Meaning we’re working on one single painting the entire four weeks.
Already I’ve learned a ton about why my approach didn’t work so well.
Because look at the difference between week one:
And week two:
The first one made me feel like I was back in kindergarten learning how to fingerpaint again.
People kept telling me it looked awesome, but I was once again disappointed that my efforts looked nothing like my vision.
In week two (last night, actually), I’m seeing how it all works together.
The big takeaway is in painting, it’s about starting from the back and working your way forward.
That’s why the first painting is so barebones… it’s all about blocking in the colors you see waaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyy in the background.
It reminds me a lot of what I went through to learn copywriting and marketing.
You’ve got to start with the basics, the really simple stuff. It’s the stuff no one loves working on because it feels like going back to kindergarten.
But if you leave out essentials, like what makes a good subject line or CTA, your marketing campaign winds up looking (and functioning) all wrong.
So don’t pull an Angie. Don’t keep hacking away at it year after year, wondering why it’s not working the way you want.
Whether it’s marketing or painting or some other creative outlet – find someone who can help you understand that foundational piece you’re missing.
You might just surprise yourself with the results…
If you’re an aspiring freelancer who’s working up the courage to leave the day job… good news! I’m sharing all the things I WISH I’d known before making the leap so that hopefully your journey goes a little more smoothly than mine.