Sure enough, the following weekend, after my post, I found myself struggling mightily at the easel. Rendering colors and shapes accurately became elusive, and consequently I was mired in the painting process. The effortlessness and joy of previous weeks quickly became tedious and labored, and I was frustrated I hadn't completed a single painting in nearly a month.
I only hoped I learned enough over the last few years to pull myself out, quickly, from this creative slump. I reminded myself yet again that progress is not linear - there are peaks and valleys as you ascend. Fortunately, I have enough tools now to be able to put one down when it no longer serves me and pick up another that is better suited for the task at hand. This is a benefit I credit to learning from multiple sources and teachers.
Before I could pick the right tool, I had to figure out what exactly was wrong with my work in the first place. I decided there were really two issues at hand: the first was that my values weren't well thought out or planned for, which actually pointed to a second, larger issue which was a clear lack of a plan or strategy, at all, with respect to my painting.
I spent the week working specifically on these areas through studies and drawings, and today, it seems to have helped with a new painting I started. More on that next time.