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Outside the Zone…
Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

IMG_3866This past Saturday, I took a watercolor class. I know that doesn’t sound edgy or exciting, and you certainly wouldn’t automatically think, “Danger, Will Robinson!” stepping into class, but I had butterflies. What if I sucked?

It was last year about this time I accepted a challenge to join the Art Guild and participate in a Studio Tour. The tour was set for October. What would I have for people to look at or possibly purchase if they came out to see the studio my mom, daughter, and I shared? I learned how to make some simple jewelry. It was a hit! I still experiment with that, make pieces when I’m trying to relax, and play with color and composition a lot. But I really wanted to see what else I might be able to do. When a class was offered in town with a well-respected artist, I said, why not? Then went on a shopping spree. Who knew you needed so much “stuff” to paint?

The class was an all-day workshop. Every level of experience welcome. I’ve never painted in my entire life, so I was the bottom ofย the rung. I chose a simple shape. I wanted to paint a single pear. The instruction told me to add two more. Said I’d done a good contour drawing. He probably said it to build me up, but hey, I glowed!

Then I had to apply paint. He was teaching us to paint “loose.” And we only had an hour to complete our piece once we wet the paper. Literally. I used a paint brush and wet the areas of the watercolor paper I wanted to have the paint run—which was all around the pears. Then I went to work. I placed the paint where I wanted it, shaded the areas I thought should be shaded, added the reds and purples at the sides because I liked the way they made the yellow pop. He showed me how to drag the paint down. See the streaks underneath the pears? Yeah, I did that on purpose. ๐Ÿ™‚

I don’t think my pears are half-bad. I’m getting them framed. And I’ve signed up to take anย oil painting class.

So what have you done lately that took you out of your comfort zone?

15 comments to “Outside the Zone…”

  1. Cassie Exline
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:20 am · Link

    Great job with your watercolor. The pears look terrific. Your question: What have I done that took me out of my comfort zone? As a writer I try to stretch myself, make things different. So I decided to write a trilogy about triplet sisters with a mystery angle. First book was a snap, but I hadn’t thought it through. Hadn’t took into consideration that I had to get into the next sister’s head and the next and keep them different. “Danger, Will Robinson.” Took a lot of thinking & making notes before I was confidant to venture on. It’s slow going but coming along. I’m out of my zone.

  2. Cyndi Faria
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:23 am · Link

    Beautiful painting, Delilah! Sounds like you had a great time trying something new.:D

  3. Delilah
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:25 am · Link

    Cassie! I’ve pantsed so many series! I get stuck, set things aside, and think while I do other things. I totally get what you’re saying! Are you old enough to remember Robot from Lost in Space? :mrgreen: I’ve always loved that line.

  4. Delilah
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:26 am · Link

    Thanks, Cyndi! I was pleased. I chose a simple subject and played with color, which is what I do with the jewelry too. I really want to learn to do more difficult things, but I’m satisfied if the color makes me happy.

  5. Teresa Noelle Roberts
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:50 am · Link

    I’ve gotten far too comfortable lately–very little risk taking or trying new things other than in the kitchen. (Or occasionally in another room–one must have inspiration for one’s work.)

    Yesterday I did something a little different for me, though. I wrote a story that didn’t have an HEA ending or even an HFN that hinted at future romance. I hardly ever do that! It wasn’t a sad ending, but a “that was fun and if you’re in town again, call me and maybe I’ll make time for you” from the woman. It feels strange, but it suits these characters so I’m keeping it.

    I like your pears–are you sure you haven’t painted before? ๐Ÿ˜›

  6. Cassie Exline
    · March 19th, 2013 at 8:51 am · Link

    Yes I do remember Lost In Space and that is a great line.

  7. Z
    · March 19th, 2013 at 9:23 am · Link

    Zomba, I can only go once a week and these ladies move fast, they are about three moves ahead of me, they smile at me when they have turned twice and I’m still facing them, watching their moves trying my best to copy and keep up because I didn’t turn at all.
    I’m also waiting to hear about helping to coach the high school track teams throwers. I don’t know how the kids will take me giving them advice on improving their throwing, since I’m only a school volunteer and not a teacher.

  8. Delilah
    · March 19th, 2013 at 9:46 am · Link

    Teresa! I love those endings! Some fans will get miffed, but the story ends when it ends. I hope it works out well for you!

    Z! I’ve always wanted to do that, but I have two left feet. I’d have to be way in the back so I didn’t bowl anyone over when I made the wrong move. I bet you’ll be in grand shape in no time, and smiling at the newbies goofing up soon!

  9. Becky Ward
    · March 19th, 2013 at 11:49 am · Link

    Beautiful painting, Delilah. Looks like you had fun and I think you should continue painting in your little bit of spare time. Hope you have fun with the oil painting class. I haven’t tried anything out of my comfort zone yet. I have been trying to find something close to me that deals with quilting but haven’t found anything yet.

  10. Deb Carter
    · March 19th, 2013 at 12:54 pm · Link

    Love the pears and you did a great job. To answer your question about what have I done outside my comfort zone? I guess I have changed from just writing for my own pleasure to making it more of a focus as a career I want more than I have in the past. So I’m working on it as much as I can so that I can be the best I can be and maybe good enough to be published.

  11. Christine Houser
    · March 19th, 2013 at 1:17 pm · Link

    Delilah, I love the pears, they look so professional. One thing I have started doing is cooking outside of my comfort zone. I am cooking different recipes from different regions of the world and trying them out on my family. Some are good and some I have flopped. But eating the same kind of foods all the time is getting boring. But all of the different recipes I keep trying one of the family likes it and other don’t. It is so hard trying to find foods that we all will like. Keep up the good work on the paintings. ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Delilah
    · March 19th, 2013 at 3:54 pm · Link

    Becky! Had to laugh at your “little bit of spare time.” You know me. Hope you find that quilting class!

    Deb! Thanks! And wonderful on changing the goal of your writing. I wish you all the best. I know how tough it can be to make it!

    Christine! Wish I lived close to you! I love experimenting with different cuisines—not cooking it myself, because I’m an awful cook—but eating it! I’m game for anything, so if I’m ever traveling your way… ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Ellen Wulf
    · March 19th, 2013 at 5:37 pm · Link

    Do you do anything badly? Writing, jewelry, and now water colors… I’m so envious! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Melissa Porter
    · March 20th, 2013 at 8:31 pm · Link

    Great pear painting.
    I hope you enjoy your oil painting class.

    I have played around with sketching and designing house layouts. Just for fun.

    I have played with poetry…that is kind of out of my comfy zone. But I have fun with it. I did get a few published when I was younger. But nothing lately…

    Thanks for sharing.

  15. Christine Houser
    · March 21st, 2013 at 7:09 am · Link

    Anytime you want to be my guinea pig Ill try something new for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

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