Monday Motivator: Using Paint’s Probable Behaviour

Monday Motivator quote

“At school, and sometimes beyond, we are advised or even required to plan our pictures, declare the idea, explain the composition, and practise each part before putting the final image together. This suits many artists well and is perfectly valid. However, excessive planning can get in the way of the imagination, the unknown, and what you discover in the process of making. It denies the importance of accident, which can offer keys to other things.

“…The physicality, balance, and spirit of each subject … held strongly but loosely between the fingertips, and allowed to flow through the brush … relied upon past experience to know the probable behaviour of the brush, ink, water, and paper. … allowed the energy and focus of the moment to be expressed through controlled accident and a degree of the unknown. … trusting the marks, and at speeds beyond conscious thought.”

Sarah Simblet, The Drawing Book, page 14

Note the word “probable”, that you’re aiming for “probable outcomes” not definite. This uncertainty, combined with a certainty from experience of what materials can do, is the magic ingredient.

blue and white daisies painted on paper

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