Jun 13, 2019
Imagine living on a boat in the San Francisco Bay area - doesn’t that sound AMAZING? How would you optimize your working area? What materials would you use? Instead of guessing the answers to this beautiful scenario - I got to ask my friend Kaethe Bealer all about it!
Kaethe is a long time listener of Savvy Painter and she’s participated in several of my workshops over the years. I have been so impressed with Kaethe’s growth as an artist. From life on a boat to her process using acrylic paint I know Kaethe’s unique insights and reflections will help artists like you in a number of ways.
Seriously though - what is it like living on a boat near San Francisco? Don’t you want to know? Apparently, it is not always as romantic as it sounds. As you can imagine space is at a premium. Forget leaving a studio space set up - if space isn’t being used - then things have to be put away. Thankfully, Kaethe has a supportive spouse who encourages her and supports her in her growth as an artist. While life on a boat sounds challenging - Kaethe also has some stellar work to show for it - which she has to store off boat at her father-in-law's house.
Speaking of Kaethe’s artwork - I was interested to hear what type of paint she uses on her boat and why. Kaethe uses acrylic paint and works mostly on pannel - her subject matter is all over the place - she loves to explore whatever catches her interest. With her life on the boat - Kathe has found acrylic paint to be the best material to use - it’s easy to clean up! She has a little evaporation bucket outside that she uses to discard her dirty water. Kaethe also uses Open Golden which is an extended drying acrylic paint.
“Just keep painting” is one of the mantras that has impacted Kaethe’s on her journey as an artist. She experienced a significant period in her life where she stopped painting and it took her while to get back into the rhythm. These days Kaethe is committed to putting in the time and logging those hours at the canvas. She wants to encourage her artisitc peers to keep at it and stay in the game. Selling her work on the internet was a huge turning point for Kaethe - that experience also buoyed her spirits and emboldened her to get her work featured in art galleries.
Have you heard the term, “Workshop junkie?” I would consider myself a workshop junkie - I LOVE workshops. If money wasn’t a factor I’d fill up my days in workshops with fellow artists honing my skills and learning new techniques and insights. In our conversation - Kaethe and I also discussed the danger of using workshops as a crutch. Attending too many workshops can lead to thinking too little of your abilities and hamstringing your growth. Finding the balance is not an easy task but it is crucial - you need to have a healthy mindset!