My favorite tell it like it is quote and words I live by....
“Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightening to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself.”
― Chuck Close
The process itself inspires and the painting will take on a life of it's own if you let it. Trusting this idea allows me to work everyday. As a process painter I have a routine of working, but I am always experimenting. It can be frustrating at times not knowing what you're doing or where the painting is going, but for me, getting lost in the process is the key to creating something new.
I had my 11 year old niece over to paint with me in the studio recently. I set her up with the tools and gave her a wood panel that I had been using as a palette to get her started. I encouraged her to continue layering the surface. Without further instruction I told her to just play and the painting would tell her what to do next.
We painted and she kept asking questions, but I realized she wasn't talking to me. She was talking to her painting, asking what it wanted her to do next! We laughed and I told her that is exactly how I do my work.
She painted the memory from our hike the day before, but that was not her plan when she started. She was excited by what she had created and what the process had inspired. It was impressive to say the least, although she did admit she has been watching Bob Ross since she was three!