Breaking Through

I took some time off the blog and painting. Not intentionally, though. I was just creatively blocked. Like writer's block, I guess. These periods are so extremely frustrating. I feel like I can't be making progress artistically if I'm not actually working on anything. I'm not sure why a block happens but maybe it's the brain's way of forcing a much needed rest? This time, instead of completely beating myself up about it, I surrendered to it. I cleaned the house, cuddled babies, read a book (!), and finally, a deadline got me out of it. I'm still not really sure if it was the deadline and powering through, or time that got me through it. 

I was so excited when a friend of mine from the other side of the country wanted to commission me to paint a portrait of her husband who was retiring from the marines. She sent me lots of pictures of him in his uniform and I asked her many, many questions about ribbons and medals to keep it all straight. I did have to force myself to finish it (due to the creative block), but I'm happy with how it turned out!

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And here he is framed and hanging in his new home. :)

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What do you do when you can't move forward? I'd love to hear someone else's ideas!