Melissa McKinnon: Artist

Melissa McKinnon is a Contemporary Canadian Landscape Artist living and painting in Calgary, AB.

Original Acrylic Aspen / Birch Tree Forest Painting by Melissa McKinnon, bright, colorful painting, red, purple, green, turquoise, fall colors.

You Must Run Before You Can Paint, My (Sort of) New Year’s Resolution as an Artist

6 Comments

You must run before you can… Paint!?

The life of an artist, wife and mother of two toddler girls is hectic to say the least. We live a very full life and we enjoy every minute that we get to spend with each other. But every precious moment that I have to myself, I paint. I have even resorted to bargaining with my husband for extra “time off” to paint.  Even though my passion and work ethic has made me very productive in the past few months, I find that I am leaving behind some key activities that I love and miss doing. I need to find time to fit these ignored activities back into my life, the most important one being exercise. Exercise (a.k.a. yoga, running and walking) is my way of relieving stress, getting energized and sometimes it’s the only quiet time in my day that I have to think and reflect.

Lately the temptation to paint (or blog, lol) has been winning out over my desire and obligation to exercise. The answer to my dilemma… I must run before I can paint! Before every painting session I have vowed to spend at least 30 minutes on the treadmill. I have set up my treadmill in my studio facing my workspace. This allows me to reflect on my previous days painting session and contemplate what I will create next. By the time I am done on the treadmill, I am focused, energized and ready to rock my time on the canvas! It’s my win-win solution.

Here are a couple of photos from my most recent running / painting sessions:

Original Acrylic Aspen / Birch Tree Forest Painting by Melissa McKinnon, bright, colorful painting, fall colors, tree drawing, sketch, trees.

Work In Progress – Initial sketch on canvas of my newest Aspen / Birch Tree Painting

Having time to study my previous days work has really helped me focus on where to go next with the painting.

Original Acrylic Aspen / Birch Tree Forest Painting by Melissa McKinnon, bright, colorful painting, red, purple, green, turquoise, fall colors.

Work In Progress – Aspen / Birch Tree Painting – The first several layers of the underpainting.

I’m curious to know from other artists and/or parent’s, how do you find balance between the things that you should do and the things that you LOVE to do? Leave me a comment below and tell me about it.

Calgary artist, original paintings for sale, painting gallery,  landscape paintings, tree paintings,  Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Canada Rocky Mountains, Banff, Canmore, Edmonton, Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Halifax, Winnepeg, Saskatoon, local artist, aspen artist, how to paint trees, birch tree painting, birch tree paintings, forest, leaves, birch tree forest, Aspen trees, birch trees, Aspen tree paintings, red, blue, turquoise, green, brown, bright colors, colorful painting, fall autumn colors, fall autumn leaves, modern art, abstract painting, paintings for sale, calgary art galleries, art gallery painting, tree paintings for sale, art prints for sale.
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Author: Melissa Mckinnon Artist

I am a Canadian artist and mother of two beautiful, spirited and loving girls, living and working in Calgary, Alberta. I love to paint large scale acrylic paintings with vibrant color and thick texture. To see my work, visit my website and blog at: www.melissamckinnon.wordpress.com

6 thoughts on “You Must Run Before You Can Paint, My (Sort of) New Year’s Resolution as an Artist

  1. Running before painting sounds like a great strategy for you. I have the opposite problem, I’m always running and haven’t painted in forever. Starting a painting almost seems like a monumental task. What’s worse is I built almost a dozen canvases, and they’re still just sitting there, untouched.

    • Too many canvases – now that is a problem that I would LOVE to have! 😉
      Let me inspire you… just start painting and the creativity will flow. One of my favorite quotes is “A year from now, you will wish that you had started today”. It really helps me to guide the decisions I make in life.
      I have always been an artist…I grew up painting, drawing, ‘photograph-ing’, glass-blowing, you name it! But it wasn’t until a blizzard-y weekend, stuck in a hotel room that inspired me to dedicate myself full time as a professional artist. Now that I am living my life long passion I can only wonder where I would be in my career if only I had started a year ago 😉
      So paint! Then send me a photo, I’d LOVE to see what you create 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by my blog. It’s nice to know that others share similar experiences.
      Melissa

  2. That’s awesome! Such a perfect solution to make it all happen! : )

  3. I’m an artist with two young children, in B.C. I’m a runner, too! I also make myself run before I’m “allowed” to paint. I get up, have coffee, run, do a few exercises, tidy up…and then I’m “allowed”, lol! My kids are school aged, at least, so during the day I have time to myself.

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