OK, since this is a blog for the amateur, I should really include little failures as well as successes. So here goes. Since the new year I have been obsessing over a new painting of a snow scene from a great photo taken by my husband. It is a little larger a canvas (40 x 80 cm) and the scene a little less “dramatic” than my usual. Just some trees in a snowy forest really. Still, I had (have?) reason to hope it could be turned, by my hand, into something reposeful and pleasant to look at. My sketch and base layer of paint looked, I must say, really good. My husband was taken by my early efforts and kept telling my how much he liked it and even showed our family back home by Skype (I don’t like that – nobody should look and comment on paintings till they are DONE). Anyhow, I was suspicious. It is my experience that things that start off way better than usual tend to head south. I was right.
Last Wednesday I hit a bit of a dead-end with the painting and saw no easy way out. After some desperate attempts at quick and easy fixes and some histrionics, I came to terms that there was no quick way out that would lead to a finished product that I would like. So I did what I have not done in a long time – I painted over a canvas – a week’s worth of work. Not a big deal, but annoying/discouraging all the same.
This leads me to wonder, do people who really know what they are doing end up painting over their own canvases out of frustration or simply not knowing how to proceed? If I had an art teacher would she kick me in the backside for wasting so much time or giving up too easily? Am I too focused on the end result and not enough on the “journey”? Maybe. At least I did not give up completely. Instead of chucking the already paint-thick canvas into my storage room I decided I would start over and stick with it.
After a few hissy fits and false starts with the painted-over canvas, I am happy to say I am back on the path. It is slow going and I sadly have lost some of the initial enthusiasm, but get done it will. It may be awhile folks. But it will be pretty sweet when it IS done (and hopefully is half decent). A small triumph of sorts. It will mean an inauspicious beginning to the year’s painting would actually be a valuable lesson learned. That’s makes for a pretty good start… I guess.
Thanks for putting up with my moaning. Wishing you a happy new week