How to start an art hobby
I have taken up an art hobby, painting. I call it “playing with colors”. This is a direct result of being a perfectionist in recovery. Creating art is not something I thought I could ever do, as I’m not an artist. Maybe you too have stories about who you have to be to create art.
Through my coaching I learned how to play again. I learned how creativity thrives on playfulness and that doing something “for fun” is a clever strategy for trying something new while also being fun. So, I started painting with cheap acrylic paint because I allowed myself to have no expectations for my ability to paint whatsoever. I am a beginner and I have given myself permission to be a beginner.
How to start an art hobby
You start an art hobby by allwoing yourself to be a complete and utter beginner. By allowing yourself to create very bad art and simply because you fancy having a go!
That’s how you start.
So many of us think art is for a chosen few or that to create art you have identify as being an artist. This is NOT TRUE. Big capital letters there because I want you to know this. There’s something different about the arts that make us a little more afraid of it. But art is for everybody.
I started painting because I wanted to play. I knew it would be bad. It's the playful process of mixing colors that I enjoy. I use our dining table to paint on as you can see on these pics. No studio or fancy space. Just our dinner table in the front room. To illustrate my point about doing bad art, I’m showing a few pictures of my painting process.
You art hobby is freedom
Having a hobby is fantastic because it's like a time out from daily life. With a hobby you can keep your expectations low. Nobody will have to see what you create. And the possibilities are endless.
This is the time to play and explore sides of yourself you haven't explored before. Be a kid and go where your curiosity take you. I could go into some of the health benefits of playing, but I feel that takes some of the fun and joy out of it. And joy is what my hobby is all about. It must not become serious, that must be avoided at all cost.
My twins also sometimes paint with me. It's just a lovely process. My daughter is great at mixing colors, not something I'm good at. It doesn't matter, painting is about enjoying the process of playing with colors. Nothing else.
As I wrote in this post, I'm a recovering perfectionist, so painting purposely bad and sharing them on social media and as blog post graphics, is part of my recovery.
I recommend this strategy if you also have perfectionist tendencies. Do something you enjoy, badly, and share it. It's totally freeing. You don’t have to share it on social media or anywhere else if that makes you nervous, it was just good for me.
Art is the language of feelings
There’s a special kind of expression that happens through art. You can speak through art in a way that is secret and unique to you. Art is a great way to sort through the chaotic thoughts we have and it’s therapeutic for many. Art therapy is a successful way to deal with difficult emotions.
I wish kids would have as many art lessons in school as they do language and mathematics. If they learned from an early age how to make sense of their emotions. I have seen toddlers 1-2 years old who have a difficult time being still, sitting still and concentrating being deeply focused when painting or playiong with modelling clay. There’s just something about using your hands to express from within. A good reason to start an art hobby.
When I started painting I used very bright colors, as you can see above. I had a lot of frustration inside and I can see that now that I’m more into pale, pastel colors. I feel more calm and in harmony with myself. Sometimes I feel like painting yellows and other times mainly green/blue. It changes and develops depending on my mood. It’s a wonderful process I enjoy so much. They won’t be any good and there’s freedom in knowing that it doesn’t matter at all. You start an art hobby by being kind to yourself and being playful again.