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I believe that art enriches and informs our lives everyday in many positive ways. Sharing those experiences, whether as an artist or as an appreciator, is part of the pleasure. I welcome your comments and hope you find something of value: a laugh, an insight, a new idea or just a happy moment. Enjoy art!

Friday, April 1, 2016

Losing the Story

sometimes an artist tells a story
within a painting...
do you ever look for it?

I have many strong impressions of the cities I have visited in Italy...and a stack of reference photos I love to revisit.  In anticipation of painting a very large canvas of a street scene I decided to do a 
smaller study first.

 6" x 12"
acrylic underpainting

To save some time I started with an acrylic underpainting just so I could get some basic shapes down on the panel.  This smaller piece has the same height to width ratio as my larger canvas so I will be able to easily transfer dimensions of what I like to the next version.

The acrylic dried quickly so I could come in with the oils and get busy on the next stage.  Now, here is where it went off track.  Yes, this was a piece about laundry day in the neighborhood but there is no focal point...there is nothing really that gives you any clues to the real story I intended to tell.  I got so caught up in the wonky buildings and the itty bitty pieces of fabrics that I failed to convey anything interesting about the scene.  

This is when one breathes a sigh of relief that it was a mere 6 x 12 inches and NOT a 3 x 6 foot canvas.  For all the times i have been told to do a mock-up or a practice first....really, who enjoys doing that?  like homework.  BUT, every now and then it proves wise to to follow old school and invest the time it takes to practice.  Think of the time and the paint (never mind the heart ache) I have saved?

I won't go into the list of errors I see above, you can do that...or not!  And I do not disagree that it is an "ok" little panel suitable for a colorful laundry room hanging.  However, along the way I lost my story and made numerous errors.  I am so very glad that it was not larger than it is and that I now have an example of how I will not execute the larger one.

Living and Learning...ColorFULLY,

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