Saturday, March 30, 2013

In a fist fight with detail. Patience on Trial...and, "Cosmic Rocks?"

 I posted the current stage of this painting first.  That's because I knew this would appear as my thumbnail pic, and I didn't want to deceive the viewer into thinking the mid stage pic was where I'm at.  I'm completely aware that the mid stage picture might look better, but in reality it is not.

 Current Stage:The camera loves to pick out that light blue (Cerulean), but this was as close as i could get to showing the actual colors. That Light blue is not as evident in the actual painting.  Maddening.
Mid Stage: This seemed to be going in the right direction here, but I wasn't happy with the forms, mostly because the left side, which I didn't get in frame, wasn't blending with the rest of it.  I thought about leaving the bottom blank.  When I went back to it, I decided that was actually drawing too much of the eye.  Keep in mind that the bottom was completely white, not that cool looking color the camera gave the blank area.
I went into this one with the intention of grinding out the details in small bits and pieces to make one cohesive, identifiable painting...The more I tried, the less it worked.  I'm disappointed at the result.  Not so much because of the painting at this stage, but because of the amount of time I invested in trying to make this work in the way I had intended.  I could not find the right color of blue show what I wanted to portray.  The cool reflection of light on the surface.  This was frustrating, and I had to leave it the way it was for now.
I woke up this morning thinking about where I can make a studio space for oil painting.  This would have been so much easier in oil.  And I don't even work in oil.  The writing is on the wall for me, and I have to make the commitment to making this happen.
With watercolor I have found that as much as I try to work from light to dark, I can't resist throwing in some darks before I have finished under-laying the lights. I have to have a visual reminder of where I'm headed.  I think this is where I get myself into trouble.  Because I have to keep pulling those darks back out where they have bled too far into the light areas.  I also have a hard time accepting too many hard lines in my paintings because I feel they look forced.
You might think by looking at the first painting that it was going well.  But as I mentioned, the painting wasn't looking cohesive with the lighter, sharper lines on the left side (which are out of the frame in that photo).  I do see that the light reflections are more successful in the earlier stage, and I'll probably go back in and make them more prominent in the finished version.  For now I'm moving on to my next project, taking the lessons learned here into account.
Andrew Wyeth once said.  " If one could only catch that true color of nature - the very thought of it drives me mad."  And I thought it was just me.
One final note.  If you can't tell what my subject is, don't worry.  Part of my disappointment comes from knowing that the subject is not evident.  Nothing is more discouraging in my mind as when someone has to ask what it is you're painting. Suffice it to say that I have now decided to classify this as an abstract and title it Cosmic Rocks. 

In a somewhat unrelated note.  One of my favorite painters is showing in NY.  Heres the link to the show.

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