These People are Good, But Can I Do It Too?

edited February 2013 in Post Your Paintings
I know that there are probably a lot of people who visit this forum lurking, as well as regular contributors, who wonder if they can learn to paint, or improve their skills by using the methods that Mark teaches. That is exactly what I thought when I first stumbled on to a previous forum where this information was living. The answer of course is, YES!

I started painting in September 2008.

This was the very first landscape that I did which I took from a photo while flying off the coast of Vietnam. Admittedly I was using water color paint but the acrylic and oil paints I was experimenting with turned out looking much worse on the canvas.

I went from this:


To this, using Mark's method. And you can too!



  • Proof is in the painting!!! ^:)^
  • No Garry, the proof is in the Knob Creek. :))
  • Garry, that is fabulous! It's like stumbling upon a gold mine, isn't it? What a great feeling to stand back, look at your painting, and think, "Wow, I really painted that. I can do it!"
  • No Garry, the proof is in the Knob Creek. :))

    What is Knob Creek?
  • Hi Maria! Knob Creek is the bottle of whiskey in Garry's painting! :)
  • Great post Garry! Watching folks grow as artist is one of the wonderful attributes of this forum no matter your starting point. It is also testimony to the amazing contribution Mark has made by sharing his knowledge. :)
  • I didn't obseve with attention...but I worked last night I-)
    Thanks Gary....I agree totally with you :)>-
  • That sums it up Garry. Good post
  • Congratulations Garry!! the knob Creek look real I'm gonna paint like that someday. That painting is awesome its 100% proof. I have the first CD The Carder Method and also have the Painting Portrait and so far I learned a lot from it. Danny
  • Jonny said:

    ...this is possibly the worst you could do on first attempt and possibly a lot better if you have had drawing/ painting experience!
    Just love painting, wished I had started years ago. :-* :-*

    Holy cow, Jonny! That is a great painting. You say, "I wish I had started years ago." AMEN to that, brother! I wish I had started when I was a kid. I didn't start until I was 47. But as they say, better late than never.


  • Jonny, all I can say is WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!!
  • Jonny, as they WOW. That is an incredible first effort but I will assume that you were very careful on your measurements, very careful on your color steps, did not blend too soon and followed Mark instructions. Add to that a very good eye. A masterful job. ^:)^
  • Garry you already know how much I love what you did with your Carder painting. You have such a beautiful touch and even in the beginning it was evident! ^:)^

    And Jonny? This is so wonderful! Just incredible! What beautiful form you captured. Wow! ^:)^
  • Hi all, Garry yeh I wish I had started as a kid, but in those days would we have found the tuition we have here, or would we have been going from pillar to post trying this and that and until our young minds gave up in frustration? I don`t know!
    Thanks Sue and Gary.
    gfish, yes being my first, I took my time and measured very carefully, and followed the `method`.
  • Jonny said:

    Hi all, Garry yeh I wish I had started as a kid, but in those days would we have found the tuition we have here, or would we have been going from pillar to post trying this and that and until our young minds gave up in frustration? I don`t know!

    True dat!
  • tjs, those are all totally kick ass. What I like most, even though they are all so kick, I mean terribly good, is that the colors in the flowers look so harmonious.
  • edited February 2013
    tjs said:

    I worked more than full time up until last year so it's been off again on again. But I think I'm at "Form" now the best I can do.

    Talk about a fantastic painter!! Damn, girl. The one thing you and I talk about though is loosening up. You know I have a somewhat bizarre mind ... and I probably shouldn't go here but I will. As Karen would say, "You always do so well until you go over the edge, which you invariably do." :)

    So... with that introduction. Painting is like sex. It is always scarier when you let yourself go, when you plunge unabashedly into the wild (whatever that is for you), but it's almost always better. It's also scary until you get used to it. But I say, let yourself go. Let the brush be free, let your brush strokes celebrate freedom and your passion for color and form. Don't give a shit about how it turns out ... just let go and enjoy yourself. Life is short and I'll bet you are happy with the results.

    I probably could have said all that without relating it to sex. But what the hell.

  • tjs, that is seriously and honestly one of the best paintings I have ever seen.
  • Anderson,

    That painting is SCARY GOOD! I mean incredible. I've seen it before but haven't really looked deeply at it.

    Regarding your becoming more "loose" ... just let go, girl. ;)

  • You know I adore your paintings TJ.....and these are just more examples of why I do. You've got the knowledge, the skill set, the raw talent, the imagination, the feelings....the only thing holding you back from doing what you truly want to paint is the six inches between your ears! Eliminate the word "can't" in that six inch's just that simple and just that hard. I know you would tell a friend the same thing! :)
  • tjstjs -
    edited February 2013
    You guys :x I love ya all so much! I do appreciate your support. I have every so many months I try something more artsy and it falls short of where I wanna go. So I just go back to the basics and work on something I failed at in my attempt. YOu should see my garbage art pile :))

    Now some of you just have a natural knack for the more painterly. I don't! But I'm getting closer. One step at a time ;) Maybe I'll never get there and so what. I've had a great experience and made lots of new art buddies. That's more important than a stupid painting :)

  • Those are all so very good. ^:)^ The cup and Cambert painting is a master piece! I was going to pick out what I liked in it, but I like everything, the colors so vibrant, congrats. =D>
  • I had the honor of unpacking the last one TJ posted in Birmingham for our group is breathtaking! ^:)^ =D>
  • LizONeal said:

    I had the honor of unpacking the last one TJ posted in Birmingham for our group is breathtaking! ^:)^ =D>

    Luky you this is my favouite :\">
    I love composition...cow...cup...background...spoon...cloth :x :x :x
  • The paintings you have displayed are above the bar. I think I understand your wanting to be painterly. I try to do that but always end tight. Not that the paintings are bad, just not what I want. People say oh that is so nice but I am never happy with them. I want to be bold, painterly but realistic at the same time. Maybe one day but your paintings have that 'oh wow' and that is pretty nice.
  • Gfish I watched a show on PBS about Georgia O'Keefe over the weekend. Someone was reading her quotes. One I think it is appropriate for painting:
    "Nothing is less real than realism."

    But that said, these paintings were studies for me to learn where my weakness are and to discover my strengths. Work on my weaknesses on the next painting and carry my strengths to the subsequent ones.

    It's how I learn? Not for everyone though :)
  • Tj, you've mastered realism in my opinion. I know you've talked about liking abstract and it makes you happy. Or at least that's the impression I got. It's been quite a while ago. Why don't you paint more paintings in that style? A long while back you posted one that you did. I can't remember what it looked like but I remember that it was really good. Is there a style called abstract realism? I would love to see you paint a set up in an abstract style. That would be very cool to see.
  • GaryGary -
    edited February 2013
    Ronna, I've been encouraging TJ to do the same thing She needs to step off into the deep end because I know she can swim!! :)
  • This is all classic artist physcology 101... Great realist artists tend to hate their own work, or only see weakness. They develop an eye which can see weakness, that is what getting better is all about after all. But this eye is a curse, it keeps telling you that your work is blah. But it is a lie of course... And yet it isn't, art can always be better. This is also the truth.

    I always dreamed about painting a masterpiece, I never did that, not from point of view. In fact every single portrait without exception is complete blah to me, some sort of weird .... " I guess it looks ok???" kinda of thing. But NOTHING like those paintings that take my breath away I have seen in museums.

    A few months ago I was looking at my portrait of the President. I never do that and was only looking at it then because David had rebuilt my site. After looking at it, I sent my friend an email asking if it looked messed up to him? He laughed at me, but to me it looks real weird, I hate it.
  • I'd laugh at you too. And I also don't like what I do, or very seldom.
  • In fact every single portrait without exception is complete blah to me, some sort of weird .... " I guess it looks ok???" kinda of thing. But NOTHING like those paintings that take my breath away I have seen in museums.

    But that's what your paintings do for me? :) That's why I have been working so hard in your method. It's why we are all here. If we saw 'blah' in your paintings? Why in the world would I or anyone else here use your techniques?

    I'm with Sue on this one - I'd laugh at you too!!!! :) As a matter of fact I'd probably have you committed or your eyes checked ;) Look at Emily and David's paintings. Do you think they could have learned from a "Blah painter"? I'm not the brightest bulb on the block but I'm not that dumb :D
  • Good point Mr. Mark, don't just look at your work... look at all the work of people you have shared your knowledge with. Quite an accomplishment and still growing.
  • Ronna said:

    Is there a style called abstract realism? I would love to see you paint a set up in an abstract style. That would be very cool to see.

    Ronna and Gary thank you for the vote of encouragement! It's a weird style. Abstract expressionism can not have any imagry at all! I"m having a tough time with that without it looking like some De Kooning knock off. In that style it's all about originality. Whereas in representational? You can do painterly and still make it your own. Paint like Sargent but use your own subject matter?

    That's my dilemena :(( I don't think I'm smart enough to figure it out @-)
  • Perhaps I approach this question or observation of the painters curse differently. There is not a single painting I've done that couldn't in so many ways be better. But there are very very few I really dislike...or, on the emotional opposite end, that I really really like. However, each was a genuine, honest effort to do the best I could at the time. I highly respect the effort of each artist whether I personally like or dislike their painting so I think it's ok to respect my own effort regardless of the final learn, to move forward with the additional knowledge and experience I gain each time I paint.

    With this in mind, I constantly reminded myself visually of those efforts and outcomes. Every wall in my studio is covered with my paintings - I don't actively sell my paintings so it's easy to do. I have a large comfortable chair in my studio....I'm in it as I write this. It's a quite place and I often spend time looking at all those paintings on the walls for specific purposes. First to remind myself of the outcomes in trying different styles of painting. But most of all I often see something new in each painting. The paintings are there to remind me of specific things I could have done much better...soften an edge, improve a composition, used a different color or make the color more subtle, etc.

    However, I choose to be an optimist! So, along with the 'bad' in each painting, I choose also to see the good. The perfect edge, a really great shadow, the happy accident because I ventured to try something a bit different without fear of the outcome (it's only paint!).

    I understand seeing the 'bad' in your own work....I don't understand seeing only the bad or pointing out only the bad in your painting to someone else. I think it's more than ok to see the good. To grow you need to see the bad and the good.

    I'm hoping others do the same in seeing the good in their work even if they don't like to admit to it or speak to others about it. When we post in the forum we are quick to speak of the curse, we seldom speak to what we like in our own paintings. Even if you don't speak to it, please think about it, you need the balance between the two in order to truly grow...just my opinion.
  • Gary there you go being a positive, inspiring influence again. Thank you.
  • Mark, I can't tell you how refreshing your honesty is.
  • I have a very hard time seeing my painting in just is paint and I don't really see the painting. I have to take a photo of it and look at it on the computer. Weird how I can then see it through another mindset. I am getting better at walking away for awhile and then looking at one from across the room and being able to evaluate one a little better. Have not done a single one I was really happy with yet.
  • Gary, today they said 30% chance of rain. I bet you are thinking 70% chance of sunshine. I like your attitude. The power of positive thinking is soo hugh. ^:)^ I like the reminder, thanks
  • Were those strawberries from room service? Love them!
  • LizONeal said:

    Were those strawberries from room service? Love them!


    About six months ago I was on my break on the way to Dubai. A flight attendant had these strawberries sitting in a wine glass on her work station. I thought they looked so cool, I mean REAL FOOD on an airliner. I shot a quick photo.

  • The roll continues Garry! Just plain super work! :-bd
  • Ok Garrykravit, how long you've been painting, I think that you are a professional painter a real artist. So we can not compete with you, but something is good out of this , we are learning from artist like you I think. When I say we, I mean some of us are beginner. I mean all of this in a good way, do not give me wrong.
  • He is just that Danny...he is an artist and has a passion for painting that will take him places. I will be able to say I knew him when! >:D<
Sign In or Register to comment.