Here I find myself, sat on my sofa, the TV on, and scrolling through my mac searching for something which will trigger something inside. Painters Block. It’s a silent creeper. One day you are happily painting, feeling as if nothing can stop you, the creative juices are flowing and you are churning out paintings which people love. It feels wonderful, the kind of feeling of when you are walking down a bustling busy street, and no one is going to get in your way, until someone does.
Someone stood in my way a few weeks back, and that stubborn bugger is not budging. The more I push, the more they stick their heels in. The frustration coming over me like a tonne of bricks. Its a hard thing to accept, painters block, lack of creativity, skill or inspiration, but I feel the moment you accept this harsh truth is the moment you realise how to get over it. The realisation that the reason you are not satisfied with your painting is because you have realised what is enough, and what used to be enough is no longer the same as what is enough now. In other words, my painters block is not what I thought it was. I compared Painters Block to Writers Block; “the condition of being unable to think of what to write or how to proceed with writing”, however I can think of what to paint, and I do know how to paint it. However, knowing and achieving are two very different things. My mentor calls this heart braking moment ‘conscious incompetence’; the realisation that you are not as good as you thought you were and in fact you have got a bloody lot of work to do until you get to where you thought you were.
Conscious Incompetence is a horrible, yet enlightening feeling as it’s a stage in your artistic and personal life which every great painter needs to overcome. At the moment, I haven’t figured out a way to overcome or solve this mystery; instead I am fighting it. It may be like all things in life, ‘stop fighting difficulty and sink into acceptance’. I will try to accept my un-satisfaction of what I am producing and continue to try to overcome this hurdle, it may take years, but the lucky thing is, I have the rest of my life to crack this code.