Getting into painting is like going on a long journey. It is exciting, it has great surprises and pleasures to offer. But like every long journey, it also puts you to the test and forces you to confront yourself to your limits. And how many are there, especially at the beginning! Anyone who decides to dedicate herself/himself to painting in a lasting way, as a passion, will notice.
It is not always easy to remain patient. I know this because I have experienced it myself - and I still do! - and because I see it regularly in others, who are going to learn or improve. I teach an oil painting course once a week and regularly offer workshops and almost always meet restless participants. They have not taken the brush in their hands since they were 8 years old, but they expect to be able to take all the rewards within their first painting. So, I may not be the most charismatic teacher in the world, but I also know for a fact that you get satisfactory results even with constancy, and most likely not on the first attempt. Some participants are so strict with themselves that they forget why they should be there: have fun! Otherwise why do it?
The hustle and bustle of our society and the constant hammering that we have to get results, and quickly too, take away our habit of conquering things day after day, year after year. If the result doesn't come quickly, then we're a failure! Painting, on the other hand, takes us back centuries, if not millennia, and makes us come to terms with our biological and cognitive nature. Our ability to learn quickly and translate an intention into the right hand gestures is subjective and we cannot replace it. We can train it, yes, but more than that, it is what it is and you have to accept it. It's not like changing mobile phones to get a better performing one!
The intention to paint well, with effective chiaroscuro, the right proportions and a good use of colours, is not enough. That your intention is actually translated, you must first go through the station of exercise, tenacity and enthusiasm for small successes. This last station is fundamental, if you skip it then you will soon give up, because being satisfied with the small successes you achieve every day brings you joy in what you do and confidence in yourself. In the end you can say that joy in painting is a long line of small successes that follow one another. It is the journey that brings the reward!