Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Evolution of a painting

Lilacs and Peonies


The Evolution of a Painting
I did a painting back in June that I thought was done.  It came off the easel and got prepared to frame.  In August I took another look at it and thought.."ugh, this painting has some real issues!".  So it went back on the easel and acquired a new life.  Once again I felt satisfied and off it came from the easel and back in the stack of "waiting to be framed" pieces.   Today I realized it still felt awkward to me and back on the easel it went!  Now some of you may like the first version best, some may like the second version and still others of you may think , "what a hideous painting, why does she bother!" none the less, for me it is a learning process and sometimes it's just necessary to make the journey! 
I thought you might find the steps interesting so I decided to post all three along with a bit of an explanation as to what I saw as I progressed through the changes.  I think I will start from the beginning.....
In June I painted "Peonies, Iris and Lilacs".  I liked the delicate feel of the flowers and wanted to keep the background light to follow through with that sense of delicate lightness.  I tried something different with the little plant stand in the composition.  It's a pretty little plant stand and the flowers seemed to sit just right on it.
Peonies, Iris and Lilacs   17x21

Now in August I realized that the background was too light and had no real interest in it.  The table while an interesting shape felt awkward and distracting to me now, as did the heavily saturated color in the Iris......so, along came part two.......I could no longer call it Peonies, Iris and Lilacs, because well, it no longer had an Iris in it, so it got a new name with it's new life.  Spring Bouquet.

Spring Bouquet    17x21

Well, with time that vase wore on me.  It just wasn't comfortable.  It felt stiff and contrived, so I thought, "just a little tweaking...."  Once I got involved it felt that some other problems existed as well so here it is...life number three.

Lilacs and Peonies   17x21

Is it done?  I think so. But hey, one never knows for sure about these things!

7 comments:

  1. I think all three have merit in their own way. I have been struggling with a painting in pastel of a bowl of strawberries. and I am about ready to give up on it! I will wait a while and see. I think of yours probably the 2nd and 3rd I could have been happy with. the third is very lovely. The second looks a little more old fashioned with the pitcher and the Glass jar in the third looks fresher. all depends on what look you are going for I think.

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    1. thank you for your insights jcw! I appreciate hearing from you. Good luck with your struggle! For me sometimes I feel it's best just to paint over a work that just isn't working...I guess it depends on whether I believe there are elements worth keeping and whether I feel I can achieve what I want if I try reworking a painting.....

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    2. I like the first one...go figure!

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    3. Oh I know some will...it's the struggle I live with. I am never satisfied. Sometimes it works to "rework" a painting and sometimes not! Often I think I only change them, I don't necessarily "improve" them hahha

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  2. thank you for your insights jcw! I appreciate hearing from you. Good luck with your struggle! For me sometimes I feel it's best just to paint over a work that just isn't working...I guess it depends on whether I believe there are elements worth keeping and whether I feel I can achieve what I want if I try reworking a painting.....

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  3. Its work very good, I like the color, composition and technical mastery.
    Congratulations.
    Greetings.

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    1. thank you Jose! that is a very kind thing for you to say! I appreciate hearing from you.

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