The Enrichment of Problem Solving

Every painting I undertake is an exercise in problem solving. Not only must I discover what I want to depict or express in a painting, but then I must decide the most effective way to compose the image. What format? Which medium? What color palette? How can I make it interesting and appealing? And the questions go on…

The more I paint, the easier it becomes to find answers to these and other questions that invariably arise. Over the years and stacks of paintings, a kind of encyclopedia of information has developed in my experiential memory. Every additional painting I work on supplements it. I can also draw on the information other artists and art historians share from the wealth of their own mental encyclopedias.

Sharing information I have learned does not deplete my own store but rather reinforces it, encouraging me to review the decisions I made in my earlier problem-solving efforts, why I made those decisions, how effective they were, and how the outcomes might have been improved. So when I teach others, my problem solving database continues to build on its own discoveries, enhancing my original experience and finding them multiplied as I help my students seek their own solutions. That’s one reason I love to teach. Another reason? I love to see others learn and become problem solvers, too.

Tags: ,

Leave a Reply