Daily Painting, Carol Marine

Daily Painting: Paint Small and Often To Become a More Creative, Productive, and Successful Artist
I’ve been following the “daily painting” phenomenon since 2005, when I wrote about a blog called A Painting a Day by Virginia painter Duane Keiser.

Keiser had committed himself to painting one small painting each day and posting it to his blog. I commented at the time that I thought this was a terrific idea, and lamented that I didn’t have the time and discipline to follow suit.

I watched with interest as other artists took up the practice, one of whom was Texas painter Carol Marine, an early adopter who started her painting a day practice in 2006. I wrote about her in early 2007.

I continued to follow the idea, as “painting a day” grew into a genuine internet phenomenon — part of a fundamental change in the way artists world-wide interact with their audience. (And, years later than I should have, I finally joined in.)

In addition to taking note of new artists taking up the practice, for which “painting a day” became too narrow a term and “daily painting” is more widely applicable, I’ve also watched some of the earlier adopters continue to make progress (which is, after all, the primary goal of the practice).

Marine, in particular, has become noted not only for her small paintings, with their inventive compositions, geometrically strong forms and bold colors, but as one of the primary proponents of encouraging others to take up daily painting — thorough articles on her blog, a series of online tutorials and in-person workshops.

In addition, Marine and her husband, programmer David Marine, established Daily Paintworks, which has become a very popular group showcase and auction system for hundreds of daily painters.

She has also published a few books through online sources, but has recently published a book dedicated to the subject of daily painting through Random House, titled: Daily Painting: Paint Small and Often To Become a More Creative, Productive, and Successful Artist (Amazon link).

I have to admit that as much as I enjoy Marine’s work, I expected a book on this topic to be somewhat lightweight, filled with lots of her appealing paintings, and a bit of breezy commentary about the practice of daily painting.

I was wrong.

I received a review copy of Daily Painting, and I was delighted to find it extensive, well thought out, beautifully designed, and dense with information.

The book actually succeeds on three levels: as an introduction to the practice of daily painting and a detailed guide to following it; as a coach-like encouragement to follow through, keep on track and overcome problems like artist’s block; and as a basic guide to the fundamentals of oil painting.

In addition to topics related directly to daily painting, such as choosing subjects, photographing and posting your paintings to a blog, promoting your work and selling small paintings online; she also does a fine job of covering painting basics like materials, composition, proportion, value, color mixing and brush work.

Marine’s primary subject matter is still life, though she also paints landscapes and figures, and the book is rich with photos of her work; but she also draws on the work of other daily painters, such as Karin Jurick, Belinda Del Pesco, Qiang Huang, Michael Naples and a number of others, to add variety in subject matter, medium and style.

Woven throughout the instruction and information is the core message of the book — and a valid and valuable one it is — summed up in the book’s subtitle: “Paint Small and Often To Become a More Creative, Productive, and Successful Artist”.

She states in the initial chapter that painting small and often: minimizes emotional involvement in individual paintings, reduces fear, encourages experimentation, provides structure and promotes rapid growth as a painter.

I agree wholeheartedly; and for anyone interested in taking up the practice, I highly recommend Daily Painting.


7 Replies to “Daily Painting, Carol Marine”

  1. I too have been following Carol Marine’s work for several years. I was excited when her new book came out, and I quickly bought it. It’s a great book for all the reasons above, and more.

  2. Carol’s generosity of her knowledge through error, time, frustrations, life itself (fire), wine (lol), etc is truly remarkable. I bought her book pre-order and it’s actually one of the best and I have a very extensive collection of the best. Literally every single one of Schmid’s, even the black and white oldies if that tells you anything. One shouldn’t hesitate for a moment on whether they should or shouldn’t buy Carols – BUY IT! You won’t be sorry.

  3. She inspired me to paint daily and, although I’ve since taken a year out, will return to paint small and often in 2015. She’s as generous as she is inspiring and certainly deserves such a glowing review.

  4. Having followed Carol for awhile; I attended one of her workshops. Her book “Daily Painting” reflects her generosity, good humor and talent as an artist. Her book, like her workshops, is very organized; full of useful information and presented with encouragement and cheer.
    Buy this book; Carol has taken a year off from teaching workshops and this is the closest you can get to this generous and talented artist’s approach to Daily Painting.

  5. Carol had been mentoring me through her blog since before I even knew her.
    I also had followed Duane Keiser from his beginning and so I was already in the blogosphere when Carol came in. Her work knocked me off my feet for all the reasons you mention. Color, drawing, composition, boldness and I knew I wanted to paint the same kind of beautifully planned and executed works.
    I was finally able to take a workshop with her in 2009 and have taken two more since. Not only are her workshops PACKED with relevant exercises and valuable technique, they are stand alone courses on painting and becoming a better painter, period.
    I knew that the book would be as good as it is because Carol is not only a master painter, she’s a delightful and generous young women who shares ALL of her knowledge.
    Well deserved success for her and we, the recipients are the fortunate ones !

  6. Excellent review of a great new art instruction book. I’ve been working with it all week and it is hugely informative and has great suggestions for strategies and exercises to improve one’s painting skills. One of the BEST art books I’ve worked with and worth every penny. Great blog, Charley!!

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