Listening to the sound of waves crashing. Looking out upon a sea of extraordinary turquoise in every shade and value imaginable. The warm sea breeze engulfing you. This is what we dream our vacations will be.
Getting away is so essential to self care. But when your art is your work and your joy and your passion — well, I can’t resist packing a little travel kit of art.
When I’m getting away with my husband and the trip is non-painting related, I’m in an ongoing search for the perfect little travel pack. I’ve tried many things and have never found that perfect one. The closest I’ve come is a little watercolor pack and a small 5×7 tablet. The problem with this is I’m not a watercolorist. I always hope the little I’ve learned about the medium will just come back to me. But the longer I’m an artist, the more I realize you have to something every day, whether it’s draw or paint with a medium like watercolor or oil. The doing it everyday is what is important. When my watercolors sit unused for a year and I pull them out for vacation, I guess it’s a bit foolish to think I’ll be able to just sit by the ocean and rock out sweet little paintings.
My hubby and I were on the Mexican island of Isla Mujeres. Golf carts are the main mode of transport and on several mornings we woke before sunrise to photograph (my husband) and paint (me) the sunrise. So I found myself sitting there quite paralyzed, not knowing how to start my sunrise in watercolor. I’ve spent a few years now doing this in oil paints. I’d love to tell you I figured it out. I did not. I just started to play with the color and shape and have fun knowing I could paint this later in the studio. And also vowing to either practice my watercolor before the next trip or to find away to bring my oils along in my carry on luggage, as I have a strict rule about no checked bags unless I’m on a painting trip.
The moral to the story is to be prepared. I should have packed oils or reacquainted myself with watercolor before going.
As for the vacation itself, it was much needed and most excellent!
I’d love to hear from you art makers out there about how you handle bring a little travel kit on non-painting vacations. And I hope this saves some of you frustration in preparing a bit more before take off!
Cheers to you all, I hope you’re enjoying this holiday season!