Thursday, January 15, 2015

"Flowers and Grapefruits", 20x16"

My obsessive nature is getting the best of me. I repainted my last painting YET AGAIN.  It's heavy from all the layers of paint underneath.  I kept going back to it on my easel, and it just seemed static to me.  It needed life and it needed even more color.  I loaded up my brushes and went at it again.

A new blog follower (Hi Phyllis) told me that an artist friend of hers would share other artists' works on her blog, along with her own paintings.  I love this idea, especially since I often have someone else's work on my mind as I'm developing my own paintings.  Recently, I've been admiring Joan Mitchell's work, and I think it impacted today's piece quite a lot.  Here is an example of her work:

As you can see, Joan Mitchell was an Abstract Expressionist.  She painted nature in such a free and colorful way, I never get tired of looking at her paintings.  She once said, "If I could paint like Matisse, I'd be in heaven".  For my part, if I could take a drop of the excitement and spontaneity of her paintings and put them into mine, I'd be in heaven too.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

"Abstracted Flowers II", 20x16"

I don't know about other painters, but I often paint many versions of a painting underneath the final layer.  The painting may appear to be spontaneously done, but oftentimes, there are layers of false starts, frustration, and anguish underneath.

I thought it might be amusing to share with you the underlayers of "Abstracted Flowers II".  Here they are:

 This first version is what's underneath it all!  I started with a glass jar, but the overall effect was too "twiggy" and haphazard.

With the next layer, I brought all those twigs together, but went overboard with the darkness.  I started to paint in some white roses, but it was starting to feel too stiff and formal.

When things aren't working, I grab some vivid tubes of paint and pile it on.  I have to smile when I see the difference between my first and final versions.  I'm in love with color, so I should just follow my instincts in the first place.  I'd save a lot of money on paint if I did.

Friday, January 2, 2015

"Abstracted Flowers", 16x20"

Creativity can be very fickle.

Since coming home from the holidays, I've been in my studio every day, struggling to bring a certain painting to life.  It refuses to budge, and I leave the studio every day frustrated and down.  Seems the harder I try to get this painting to work, the further it gets away from me.

Today, I decided to try a new course of action.  I put the old painting away and took out a floral that I had started months ago but never finished.  I started to paint with happy abandon, and this painting cooperated with me!  It may not be to everyone's taste, but I was able to let the paint flow without over thinking it.  I feel like I'm out of my creative rut, and that is indeed a good feeling.