Introducing: WIP Wednesday

I thought it would be fun to do a weekly “WIP Wednesday” post. WIP is used across social media platforms as an acronym for: Work In Progress.

I thought ‘this will be easy, I’ve got plenty of pieces I’m currently working on.’

So I started rifling through the piles of paintings – on my floor, on my studio table, the mounds of canvasses stacked in my living room, even pieces I’ve temporarily placed on the wall in hopes that viewing would summon an ending I felt comfortable with.

MMM_WIP-Wed-pile-painting-watercolorsRummaging through the endless piles, I had the harsh realization that – gasp – most of my work is unfinished. And, not in a beautiful life analogy-kind of way. But in an oh crud, I haven’t finished a painting in a few weeks-kind of way.

I’ve started many during this phase while my learning curve is soaring. But when I’d come back to the unfinished paintings, I sometimes didn’t care for the work itself and felt helpless in finishing it.

This is when I realized I had hit my first lull in painting. The reality felt harsh – mostly because, while I knew it was inevitable, I didn’t know how long it would take me to rebound out of it.

I tried working on one of the pieces, a watercolor sky – a medium and subject I’m somewhat comfortable with – and I worked it. And I worked it. I worked it so much that by the time it was too late to recover, I realized I’d rubbed the first layer of paper right off the page, covering the painting with soggy shreds of dirty paper. Eww, I thought. I stepped away for a run. And again, I had an icky run. I visited gardens that usually light my inner creative on fire. Last night they barely lit a match for me. And the run – it was slow and painful, despite having completed a ten-mile run a week ago.

So I went from analog to digital mode and looked up one of my favorite watercolorists, Emily Proud. I found one of her pieces that inspired me and I let myself get lost in it.

To my surprise, it worked – I slowed my pace, turned off my cell phone and allowed myself more time to not feel rushed. It was a bit painful at first. I was hard on myself and my eye for error was drunk with mistakes. But I kept going.

And, I finished it (the plant on the left in the below photo). I wasn’t even sure if anyone would like it – but that didn’t matter to me. What mattered was that I sat there patiently, focused and fell in love with watercolors as a medium – again.

It felt so good.MMM_bubbles-flowers-watercolors And so, on my painter’s high, I started playing around because I had spare paint I didn’t want to waste. These bubbles are playful, but – to me – they also communicate with a serious undertone. I’ve been having a lot of fun experimenting with different color combinations of the bubbles.


I know there will be good days and bad. Some days will be more inspired; some days may be dark and lonely. But, at the end of the day, I will always have my paints and I can always come back to the canvas.

I will make mistakes – lots of them, I’m certain – but that is how I’ve learned everything I know. And so, while it may be uncomfortable I know it is only temporary.

Our world is full of beauty and I strive to love, seek and explore it – unconditionally. So, here’s my actual WIP Wednesday piece: a painting I recently experimented with. I may end up scrapping it altogether, but I’ll still take away a whole bunch of learning and those lessons may be more valuable than the painting itself. (Warning: I took these photos on my iPhone with no intention other than to document for myself, but decided today it might be fun to share the progression.)


This entry was published on August 13, 2014 at 7:31 am. It’s filed under making a mess in the studio., WIP Wednesday and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

5 thoughts on “Introducing: WIP Wednesday

  1. Andrew on said:

    Strong work

  2. Johnd218 on said:

    As soon as I detected this site I went on reddit to share some of the love with them. adfedbeefcbd

  3. Marisol Gaffney on said:

    Thank u for sharing Meredith. U inspire me.

  4. LEAPS and BOUNDS.

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