Welcome to my Universe! What fun it is exploring not only color, shapes and lines, but the BIG PICTURE things like ideas, concepts, emotions, perception and consciousness. At first I wasn’t even aware that making ART could involve these lofty pursuits. It wasn’t that long ago that my art adventure began. I just wanted to make a picture of something? …anything!  

Where to start? How about the local art store? My first few trips were abruptly aborted when I saw the vast selection of paints, brushes and many other mysterious and unidentifiable tools of the trade. Not only that, but the clerk (obviously a brilliant artist) seemed so intimidating, so artsy-fartsy, so experienced. Certainly he could tell that I knew absolutely NOTHING and that I had never set foot in an art supply store. Eventually, I came away with something to paint on, with my little “hand-me-down” brushes. Yes, a small canvas board would be the surface of my grand experiment. With the help of an art tutorial CD by a “Bob Ross” type of guy, I managed to make a painting. It is embarrassing, but you can see my very first painting here.

So what does an artist do? Obviously he makes the art and as I discovered, has to acquire the supplies and tools. I didn’t know at first that there would be so much THINKING and LOOKING involved. Some artists spend much more time than I do on planning. My improvisatory style eliminates a lot of that. However, in order to begin any art-making, there are decisions to be made about the tools, media and process that you will use. Yes, a lot to think about …Paint? Markers? Ink? …on Canvas? Paper? Board? …with Brush? Palette Knife, Airbrush? And there are hundreds more in zillions of combinations! Once you finally get set up and start working there is much less thinking needed. You just let it flow.

A little more about the looking: Periodically while working you can’t help stopping to evaluate what you’ve done and to determine what comes next. Then, when finishing for the day, I have a difficult time leaving the studio and my painting behind. Looking, looking and more looking! And now, as an artist, I have begun to look more at everything in the world around me. Not just looking, but really starting to SEE and NOTICE. I even see things that are not there. Don’t be alarmed! I mean that I see possibilities in my mind’s eye. Sometimes even my dreams reveal spectacular visions. If only I could remember ALL of them.

What Does an Artist Do? Just speaking for myself, here is my current TO-DO LIST:

Scott’s To-Do List

What else does an artist do? Some projects involve applying gesso to canvas or otherwise preparing the surface on which I will paint or draw. And I must gather together the paints and tools. In later posts I’ll get into the details of specific projects. But even after a work is complete there is much for the artist to do. For instance, THE CLEAN-UP.

Then there is organizing paintings, documenting and photographing the work, wiring the painting to be hung or in some cases framing the painting. Fortunately my framer handles the difficult stuff. What next? In order to sell art it must be seen and promoted. That consists of social media activity, calls, networking and schmoozing. Are you tired yet? I am. Are you wondering how I keep up with all this?

Here’s the answer:

There’s more to being an artist than I ever imagined, but it’s all fun!

Feel free to send any comments or questions to me. …about art, music, the meaning of life or the essence of reality.

Explore the Universe of ART

with Scott Steelman

What do artists do? Yehan Wang, one of my favorites, makes paintings his own special way – using a palette knife. Yehan is a Chinese-born Canadian whose work has been shown around the world. I love to watch him work!


This week we feature some music by my friend, Lisa Bella Donna. She’s a keyboard and synthesizer virtuoso, guitarist, drummer, composer and much more. We used to play in a band together and are kindred spirits in music. Much of her music is really WILD (just the way I like it). This selection, though, has a universal beauty that is accessible to any music lover. We’ll get to the WILD stuff later. 

Join the Journey. Also get a FREE Downloadable PRINT when you sign-up for my email blog notifications. It’s exciting – come on along!




New Animation, “Warpster”