A Treat!

We often hear about the need to push ourselves, to step out of our comfort zones, and to do things that are a little bit scary. That’s what I’ve done recently. I gathered my courage, framed a few oil paintings, and bravely entered my work in an art show. I also packed up my soft pastels, my drawing paper, and a few miscellaneous supplies and took part in my first art workshop.

What on earth do I think I’m doing!

That question still nags at me a little bit — it was the same nagging question that hounded me when I wrote my first post for this blog. Was I crazy? Sharing my art with other people?

Of course, I’ve come a long way in the last three years, and — if I say so myself — some of my artwork is good. Some of it, of course, isn’t so good, and to be honest about it, some of my art is downright awful. It’s a learning experience that will last a lifetime.

That’s true even for the most talented artists, I’ve learned. Yesterday morning I chatted on the phone for a bit with Patsy Albers, president of our local fine arts association and first-place winner in our recent members only art show. I’ve admired Patsy’s art since we first met, and I’ll admit to being a bit surprised when she came to the recent pastel workshop. She’s already so talented! While we chatted on the phone yesterday, she mentioned an online workshop she’s eager to sign up for. Again, I was a bit surprised. Patsy’s art is incredible. I can’t see any way it could ever be better.

Workshops, I’ve come to realize, aren’t always all about getting better. It’s awesome to learn new techniques, to have an opportunity to talk about our art with an instructor, and to practice various skills, but even more important is the social aspect, I think.

Where I once felt intimidated being around so many artists, I’m now beginning to feel much more comfortable. I’m getting to know these women — and the few men who attend our meetings. I feel much more at ease now, even when I’m sketching.

In a way, it’s like letting out a breath I’ve been holding. I no longer worry about fitting in or whether or not I belong among the others. I feel more accepted now, that I’m truly a real part of the art community, not just a wannabe tagging along.

And so, after pushing myself forward and doing things that frightened me just a bit, I felt I deserved a little treat. I loved attending the pastel portrait workshop, and I want to do more portraits. I’ve always enjoyed doing portraits, and I do like working with soft pastels. So, why not do more?

Although I have soft pastels, I didn’t have any pastel pencils. At the workshop I saw how useful they can be. Once I got home, I quickly ordered a set. I chose the same brand the instructor, Linda Wisely, had at the workshop, and I can’t wait to use them.

Pastel pencils
I’m excited to try my set of new soft pastel pencils.

It’s always fun to get new art supplies, and it’s even more fun for me now that I feel I deserve them. Yes, I gave myself a treat. We all need to treat ourselves at times.

What’s YOUR most recent “art treat”?


  1. My recent art treat : Color Right Food Coloring System by Wilton. These are small bottles of colors for fondant art. Very expensive for what you get, but the colors are wonderful.
    Sometimes, when I am in the right mood, I use fondant as my canvas. I still have a small edible painting I made last year and I don’t have the heart to eat it… 😉 If you check my art blog –not the book blog–you may see one of my cakes….
    The card that says ” Cell Block 704 was hand painted using the food colors. everything else is fondant…. and cake of course!
    I make cakes for fun….in between book reviews and life. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. My recent art treat was a larger ex-pen tablet 🙃🙂🙃 I haven’t used it yet because I am lightheaded due to a ear infection. I am ok on my smaller tablet which sits on my lap. I can’t wait to see your results, I’m sure they will be great 👍

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Every so often I get this urge to go BIG, and in the past I kind of suppressed it because the results were not necessarily saleable. I’m past that saleable thing and I want to be ready when the urge hits!

        Liked by 2 people

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