the joy of learning from a master

I attended a one hour zoom call with Ohn Mar Win today. It was an exclusive for subscribers of her email list, and she taught us how she draws pears with wax resist. A simple techniques, but in her hands it creates illustrations of such beauty that you just sit back, stunned and admiring.

Wax resist with gouache overlay. Not as translucent as the watercolour.

She said something in the class that is so true. It is something that has resonated with me for a long time prior to this moment as well. Her art takes time. She has been painting and practicing for years. Her methods, materials, techniques and style have evolved over years of working consistently. The art career she’s built up has not popped into existence from nothing.

My watercolour wax-resist pears page from the zoom session.

It takes hours and weeks and months and years of persistent effort, trial and error, to reach the point at which she now finds herself – a successful illustrator making a career from her art. Nothing starts from doing nothing.

And that’s the most important lesson I learnt from this master of her art. It is why I take so many classes and use my sketchbook so much to make art for the sake of practice, experience, learning and, not least, pure joy.

Taking the time to make without the expectation of making every piece into something final, or something to sell, is essential to one’s art practice.

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