I've had and listened to many conversations around this recently.
As the pandemic hit and artists moved their workshops online, they became more accessible than ever. Online painting courses, drawing workshops, collage classes, there's been an abundance to choose from (and I've taken as many as possible!) There's often talk attached to taking other artist's workshops - in that, if you take their class, you'll end up painting like them and copying their style.
Well, I don't think this is the case - it might be in the beginning when you're learning a new process or technique but not in the longer term, your own style will always show through.
In fact, I think it's brilliant to take other artist's workshops. I love learning about their approaches, tips + tricks and invaluable advice. I soak it up like a sponge and then take the parts which work for me and interpret them in my own way, into my own practice and the work is never the same as the artists.
So what I'm trying to say and relate it to the picture is, I was starting to think about how I was going to take the recent (5 days ago) b+w collage exercises which were instructed by another artist whilst I was taking their workshop, into paintings. I looked in my stash of unfinished boards and pulled this one out. This was started some time last year (I saw a post in my Instagram feed from Sept 2019 so it must have been around then) and I was surprised to see just how similar they were, not exactly but you can see the resemblance in composition and it made me think how our style is already within us
We already know what feels good to our eye, we already know how and where we like to place elements within a composition and how we like the balance to feel - we've always known - it's what makes us feel good, it's what feels right and sits well with us - this is so interesting to me - and the deeper we go into our practice, the more defined these things become. I love it, its so uniquely personal.
So I guess it's a case of keep doing what feels good to you, keep doing what interests you and what lights you up - that IS your style.
More from the collection which followed these exercises can be seen here