3 AWESOME things I was just reminded of…

I recently was reminded of 3 things. When I think about them I always feel more excited about what is possible for my Art and Life.

And this is what I want to talk about today.

If you are rushing out to get your coffee and don’t have time to watch right now, here are the 3 awesome things I want to remind you about…

#1 Making amazing, authentic art is available for anyone. Yes, that means you too.

#2 The big mover and shaker in making your Art friggin extraordinary is…. YOU! It is all about leaning into who you are…and guess what? You already have all that!

#3 Here is, hands down, the coolest way to think about and motivate yourself to make more art more of the time…

Art making is the time in your day when you get to entirely, unequivocally be yourself. No phone calls, no one looking over your shoulder, and no one even in the room but you. It is the time you get to be totally free.

How great is that?

I was reminded of these 3 empowering ideas while sitting in the audience, listening to Marie Forleo at her recent book launch event in San Francisco.

These ideas got me all fired up and so I just had to share them with you.

Her new book “Everything is Figureoutable” is easy, funny and CLEAR. (Which I SO appreciate.) It is also super helpful and I bet will inspire your art as well as your life. It did mine.

Marie Forleo, in case you haven’t heard of her before, teaches and inspires entrepreneurs, creatives to dream bigger and create results in their lives. She is the creator of the uber popular MarieTV and the Marie Forleo Podcast.

Marie is very successful, but most importantly she is down to Earth. She is accessible. She makes the rest of us feel we too can realize our biggest dreams.

I love people like that.

Anyway, I was given an extra copy of her book at the event so I wanted to give it away to one of you!

Later today we will choose a standout comment and let you know next week who will receive this signed copy of “Everything is Figureoutable” (Signed by her, drawing of Maizy by me!)

What inspiration thing are you reminded of today?

Let us know in the comments below.

Make art today like there is no tomorrow. That is my plan!

Nicholas

PS If you are new to Art2life, click on the link below to get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Are you playing big?

Do you ever feel like your art has stayed the same for too long?

When this happens to me I do a this really cool exercise. It totally works for me. Let me show you ..

Here is the basic idea…    

I give myself the task of only doing two things. Do something big and make it different than what I have done before. Whatever you make, providing it answers those two criteria, will often jumpstart your creativity. 

Bold, different moves lead to bigger, faster changes in your art. 

And change is what it is all about. Especially in art. 

How do you jumpstart your creative process? Let us know in the comments below.

Hope your day in the studio is great.

Nicholas

PS The winners of the Sennelier T shirt giveaway are Kelly Bracamontes and Kendra who commented about overcoming her dry spell in art. 

Shoot me an email at info@art2life.com with your shirt size and mail delivery address! Congratulations! 

Special thanks for the folks over @artsavoirefaire for hooking us up with a few of these great shirts. Also check out @sennelier1887 to learn more about these oil pastels and oil sticks.

If you want to purchase them you can find them here https://www.art2life.com/product-category/pastels/ or in better art stores in your area.

PSS If you are new to Art2life, click on the link below to get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Are you a stranger to your art?

Hi there,

I have been away from my studio
this summer. When I returned, I felt
like a stranger to my art.

Do you ever feel this way?
I used to struggle with this
every time I came back after
a long break.

But I figured out some helpful
tips that might work for you too.

How can we drop back into our
art making quicker and easier?

That is what today’s Vlog is all about.

I explain 3 key concepts.

#1 Take imperfect action.
It is all about actually doing something
that you can see. It doesn’t have to be good
it just has to be started.

#2 Convenience vs Commitment.
Our art is the later. It never is
slam dunk easy or convenient.
Don’t expect it to be.
Make a commitment to action,
to doing something that
moves the needle.

#3 Use the strategy of “play.”
A play mindset can help you more easily
re engage with your art. It creates
a feeling of wonder, curiosity and
one that is less serious. This, by the way,
is the optimal head space for making
your most extraordinary art.

These 3 concepts have helped me.

Let us know what helps you in the comments below.

Hope your Sunday in the studio is fun.

Nicholas

PS From those who comment on
today’s Vlog I will choose two
people to win a Sennelier shirt
like the one I am wearing. I will
announce the winners next week.

Special thanks for the folks over
@artsavoirefaire for hooking us up
with a few of these great shirts.
Also check out @sennelier1887
to learn more about these
oil pastels and oil sticks.

If you want to purchase them
you can find them here
https://www.art2life.com/product-category/pastels/
or better art stores in your area.

PSS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Still hoping your art will turn out?

Hi there,

I call it hope painting.
This is when you just hope
that your art is going to turn out.

Sometimes it does and sometimes it
doesn’t.

This was my experience,
till I figured out a new way.

It is all about asking one
little question.

Less hope and more
clarity will always
create your best art.

What questions do you ask to make
your best art?

Let’s talk about this below.

Nicholas

PS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Is your art habitual?

Hi there,

Have you ever tried setting up a schedule
to make art for so many hours
on so many days?

I have tried this a bunch of times but
in the end I just never stuck with it.

Sometimes something came up
or I just didn’t feel like painting
for that amount of time on that
particular day.

And then I felt bad
about it which made things
even worse.

Clearly this was not working.
But tweaking things just a little
has made an art routine possible for me.

It was a small tweak but
has made a big difference in establishing
my habit of art making.

It turns out there are a ton of ways
to create good habits you want in your life as
well as letting go of old ones that no longer serve you.

What habits help you in the making of your art?

I bet our tribe knows a thing or two
about this subject!

Nicholas

PS If you want to learn more about habits check out
James Clear’s brilliant book “Atomic Habits”

I read it this week and learned a ton!
https://jamesclear.com/atomic-habits

PSS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Where are you looking?

Hi there,

Your art might not be the
best place to look when
trying to improve it.

Your art is simply the final
result of many, many small
actions and steps.

This process, I have discovered,
is the best place to start
looking in order
to improve your art.

How you feel and think
on the way to making your art is
what really determines the
final outcome.

This is what today’s video is all about.

If you are looking to uplevel your
art you might try looking, not
at your art, but at the process
that created it.

What part of your art process do you
want to improve?

Let’s talk about this at the comment section below.

The changes I have made to my process have
made a huge difference in my art.

I hope this idea can be helpful for you too.

Enjoy your time in the studio today!

Nicholas

PS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can improve
the color in your art!

Color Tips Download.

Is something calling you?

Hi there

Do you remember what awoke you
to your creativity?

It is different for everyone.
It could be seeing someone else’s art,
or it could be just seeing something in your life
that stirs your desire to make your art.

But make no mistake, these messages come.
And at some point, we notice them.

Today’s talk is about a few artists that did notice.
And took action.

This is about waking up to your
creativity.

Possibly you have already.

But maybe you are just
realizing that, in this life,
you might need to pivot
towards your creativity
a little bit more.

Towards more of what
brings you alive.

Is there a sign, message or signal
trying to get your attention?

Let’s talk about this below

I can’t think of anything more life
changing than the answer to this question.

Nicholas

PS Here is my cover art for Brene Browne’s “Gifts of Imperfection” mentioned
in the video.

PSS Brene is brilliant.
Here is a link to her fabulous new book
“Dare to Lead”

PSSS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Lines. What I just learned.

I have been drawing and painting my whole life
and it never ceases to amaze me how much there
is still to learn.

Today in the studio I discovered some cool
things about lines.

Lines can give your art a feeling of spontaneity
and scale without losing or markedly changing
what you have already made!

It’s a shortcut to energizing your painted surfaces
by adding in a relatively minor mark.

And what is so friggin amazing to me, is that
a line that is truly made with abandon and freedom,
will retain this energy even when partially covered.

In other words, even if we see just parts,
it still shows the energy of the whole line!

Understanding these aspects of lines is huge.
Moving forward, I will be drawing way more
into my work.

Is this something new to you too?

Let’s talk about this in the comments below

Nicholas

PS If you are new to Art2life,
Click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

Less is More

My big studio table becomes cluttered with just about everything.
What ends up there by the end of the week is startling.
There are coffee cups, notes, unopened mail, magazines,
paint brushes, laptop cords, pens and palettes, and this week
even a single running shoe.

So I was clearing it up and as I did, I realized something.

I don’t think we actually make our best decisions first.
In art and especially life we often seem to land our best
decisions by changing previous ones.

A choice in our art, say a color, might only become
great by eliminating, changing the color it sits upon.
The beautiful symmetry of a tree might only be seen
by removing the tree in front of it.

The creation of Art, the delicious process of
making things is really about enhancing what
you love by eliminating all that you don’t.

Today, I will share a few key aspects of this
very important idea. Have a look here:

Remembering this can be a game changer for
how you make your art.

What can you take away to make your
art / life better?

I love this question.

It restores in me a hopeful feeling. The same one I get when
my studio table becomes mostly empty except for just the one
or two exciting things I am working on.

When I can see what I love clearly,
everything is better.

Let us know in the comments below how this idea
shows up in your art / life.

Nicholas

PS If you are new to Art2life,
click on the link below to
get my free Color Tips PDF.

This can help improve
the color in your art.

Color Tips Download.

The words that make your best art.

While travelling in Mallorca I got to
peek into Joan Miró’s studio.
Artist studios are such personal places and Miro’s
was no exception. His lifelong dream was to create
a beautiful studio in his adopted home of Palma,
Mallorca to make his art.

Everything is left the way it was when he was working.
There are stacks of paintings, newspaper clippings, found objects
as well as postcards from all over the world still pinned to the walls.
Miro selected everything in his studio and as a result all of it seems
related to the work he was making. It somehow all makes
sense when you peer into the space.

Throughout the studio there are numerous found objects,
paint stained tabletops, a shipping crate sent from London,
a portfolio folder with a hand lettered label which read “Varis” important
and of course dozens of canvases.

Even though I could see everything in the studio I couldn’t
help wondering about what I could not. What was spoken here
during the many afternoons Miro made his art? What about that
spring day in 1958 when it was announced that he won the
Guggenheim International Award? What did he say when
he was struggling with his art?

How he thought, spoke and expressed himself ultimately was
what created this remarkable fountainhead of art.
It is the same for us too. How we speak about what
we are doing, the words we choose will undoubtedly
influence the potential of our own creative expression.
I believe we all need to become better at choosing
accurate words to describe what and how we are making art.

I decided to create 2 lists that are compilations of the most
common positive and negative phrases and words I hear
from artists who are struggling as well as those thriving.
I believe there is a big connection with what we say
and ultimately what we create.

Below are some of the most common best (and worst) studio
words and phrases… do any of these sound familiar to you?

These words and phrases might help you make your best art…

Curious
Explorative
Playful
Spacious
Easy
Fun
Excited
Scary (in a good way)
In love
Letting go
Believe
Favorite Colors
Cherishing
Loud!
Quiet
Learning
Stretching
Unlimited
Wonder

These words and phrases might not help you make your best art…

Am I talented?
I am bored.
She is better than me.
No one will buy this.
Behind everyone
Perfection
No time.
I will just wait.
I am too old.
I can’t let them know.
I am a slow learner.
I am great.
It sells so it is good.
He / She said my art was great.
He / She said my art was not.
My best art is in the past.

What words and phrases you are ready
to omit or add into your creative life?

Let us know in the comments below!

Nicholas