Artist’s life

Overcoming fear, one brushstroke at a time, stuart bush, stuart bush studio, contemporary artist

One brushstroke at a time

Overcoming fear by taking one brushstroke at a time I want to share with you, a story about how I overcame my biggest obstacle and my biggest fear. As I look back to when I finished my post-graduate course in Fine Art in 2007, aged 29 years, I am still surprised how naive I was. I thought I only needed to display my artwork in a proper gallery, it would be seen by someone in the know, and I would be an overnight success.  How wrong can I get it!  I realise there is no such thing ‘god’s gift’. Unsurprisingly quick success didn’t happen. Instead, shortly after graduation, I had a… Read More »One brushstroke at a time

Stuart Bush Blog, Learning how to live as an artist, The slipping of pattern and form

Learning how to live as an artist

Learning how to live as an artist – Stuart Bush Studio Notes It feels like it has taken me a long time to work out what I think is important and to trust myself.  When it comes to sharing my errors and experiences, I want to be an open book.  There is a lot to learn from small discoveries, successful experiments and breakthroughs, in the studio, in life and from a positive personal outlook.  There is also stuff that I wish someone had shared with me.  I use to hate making mistakes.  However, now, my perspective on how to live as an artist has turned full circle.  I am grateful… Read More »Learning how to live as an artist

Stuart Bush Studio Blog, pretending to be an artist, I can't trust myself

Pretending to be a painter

Pretending to be a painter When I hear a negative voice in my head saying, “I am in over my head, they are going to find out,” this little voice reminds me I am not good enough.  It seeks to devalue myself worth causing me to underestimate myself.  Then I come to the conclusion that l must be mad about choosing to be an artist. I realise that l have volunteered myself for all this self-doubt.   I feel like l am pretending to be a painter.   If l am not careful the voice gets out of control and my self-confidence is eroded. It is hard to break the psychological… Read More »Pretending to be a painter

Stuart Bush Studio Notes, artist's time, art for sale

Is time the artist’s greatest enemy?

Is time the artist’s greatest enemy? I dream of sitting in my dusty studio. The pungent scent of turpentine is in the air. I can see the photographs and sketches stuck on the wall. Devils Haircut, by Beck, plays in the background and newspapers, magazines and books litter the paint-covered floor.  I have a primed blank canvas on the easel, all ready to go. I sit, staring and reflecting on what to do next. Shall I draw or paint today? I wish there was nowhere else l have to be.   I often only wish it was true; that I had nowhere else to be. The idea of being unbound by… Read More »Is time the artist’s greatest enemy?

Dreaming about success

Dreaming about success Often when I turn on the shower and step in, I turn on a shower of thoughts and start dreaming. I’m not sure why it happens in the shower, but I think it is a favourable place to be flooded with thoughts and ideas. My mind also, unfortunately, wanders when I am painting. Over time, I have realised I have become a professional daydreamer. This is the wrong time and the wrong place to be dreaming about success and imagining the future. I feel the need to gain some self-mastery of my busy creative mind. I used to think dreaming about the future was my reward for… Read More »Dreaming about success

Stuart Bush Studio Blog, Rebound from a failed painting, Law of the jungle

Rebound from a failed painting

Rebound from a failed painting I was taught at school that everything had to be right.  I was encouraged to conform so that when I grew up I would make a good employee. Education was stifling.  I was urged to aim for perfection; however, I was a long way away from achieving that.  Sketching and doodling were discouraged, learning from failure was hindered.  As a consequence, I had no idea how to rebound from a failed painting.   When I started to learn to paint I use to stop, look and make a judgment about my progress. I worried I was wasting my time and making a blunder.  I hated being wrong.… Read More »Rebound from a failed painting

stuart bush studio, you don't understand me,

Painter Killed By Critique Of His Own Bad Art

Painter Killed By Critique of His Own Bad Art. Most artists share the same fear and dread, a bad review!  You think it’s all over.  It makes you feel reluctant to share your work. I can imagine the day a museum curator knocks on my studio door with good news, and there is no answer.  The bell keeps ringing…   The curator keeps trying to get an answer until she realises something terrible might have happened.  Eventually, she gains access.  Underneath a pile of bad art, she can see my feet sticking out the bottom.  Is he dead?  Does she run for help? No, she horrified by how much bad… Read More »Painter Killed By Critique Of His Own Bad Art

I love my work more than what it produces

I love my work more than what it produces

I love my work more than what it produces. I am happiest when I realise that there is something to investigate, something that doesn’t quite fit.  I love the slow development of an idea.  The slow convergence of thoughts that often come after a period of incubation. l realise then that there is a problem worth tackling, a problem that is going to become my muse.  It is exciting to think that possibly, this concept hasn’t occurred to anyone else.  If it has occurred to someone before me, they will likely approach it in a completely different way.   I love going deeper, I just follow my hunch and allow… Read More »I love my work more than what it produces

Stuart Bush Studio Notes, creative freedom

It takes discipline to have creative freedom

It takes discipline to have creative freedom I crave for life without physical, mental or financial constraints.  It has been my intention not to have limits on what I do, what I say or how I spend my time.  I want to make what I want when I want.  One of the attractions of being an artist is the concept of free expression.  However, our culture often wires us up to do what is safe and sensible.  In my experience, it takes discipline to have creative freedom.   Commercial art is a good, sensible way of making a living from art.  It has a project outline, a list of do’s and don’ts and… Read More »It takes discipline to have creative freedom

Stuart Bush Studio notes, typical day as a painter

My typical day as a painter

My typical day as a painter starts with waking up between 5 and 6:30 am.   I have a clear head in the morning and I have learnt to appreciate this early start as it allows me to exercise, meditate, write in my journal and catch up with any writing l have to do.   Everyone else in the house is up by 7:00 and then l enjoy spending quality time with the family.  I help my boys with their homework and get them ready for school. I really appreciate these enjoyable family moments.  I look forward to the short walk to school.  On the way back I have the opportunity to remind… Read More »My typical day as a painter