Saturday, January 30, 2010

NOW WHAT?

This painting has gone down hill very quickly.  There are major problems here.  Eyes are scary dead looking.  Big drawing errors...the right side doesn't work with the left.  I lost too much of the collage papers, overall head is too big, nose looks crooked, mouth off center (tried to fix it and created a nasty expression) and the paint quality is pasty looking (this may not show up in the photograph but apparent in person).  So here is a learning situation.  1.  When working this size, draw the image first on tracing paper and transfer.  2. Use acrylic on this type of collage paper.  The watercolor sticks are too flat.

Now, I have to decide what to do.  The best thing about this type of disaster is that there is no fear of ruining it, so I feel free to try interesting ideas to rescue the image.  Last resort, cover it with gesso.  Because this painting has an acrylic base, my first choice is to remove as much of the watercolor paint as possible and see what I have.  Then, I could paint over it with acrylic, or add another layer of collage and then paint it.  I may have another inspiration depending on what it looks like.  


20 comments:

lfspansyliz said...

i am not the artist you are, but i want to point out what a different eye sees...1. A women with bells palsy (a nerve deal that i do not know if i spelled correctly, that paralyzes a side of someones face) or a woman after a stroke. 2. The dark eyes reminds me that we fail to see the person.....the inside as an bee seen in the eyes of someone we only look at the outside. 3. The hand and the ring are a mystery that tells a different story. 4. The triangles that seems to place a collar tells me something, like what she might have done before this state she is in physcially. Oh well. i have been looking at your blog for a few weeks and while i see the "errors" you lay out i see them in a story of the picture. Just wanted to give you another eye.

LFS, liz

Kathy said...

When the image first popped-up on the screen I said to myself, "wow!" I like the face and posture very much. I didn't like the two quilt diamonds coming out of your neck like a collar, but the rest I was good. Then I read your critique and thought that some points were right-on. However, it didn't matter to me if some of the features were exactly right because of the overall character of the face. It will be interesting to see the new version. As Sue always says, "cure it or kill it!"e

Sandra Rowney said...

Ha! I am not alone! I've just tried your blog this lunchtime for inspiration having made a complete mess of a painting.........
Our local group of artists are putting on a show in the spring where we 'pair up'. My partner has been round this morning and suggested I paint out the car (took me 4 hours) move the hot air ballon (took me 3 hours) adjust all the tones on the foreground (took me all yesterday afternoon)and so on. She's right.
Your blog rescued my self esteem though!! Onwards and upwards eh?

Kay said...

Oddly enough, I like this in a strange kind of way. It almost looks as though you have painted two halves of (the woman's) life. I would be tempted to rename it, putting aside the fact that it was a self portrait, and focus on the new images emerging, treating the two halves separately with perhaps 30 years of life experience between the two. You may not agree, but worth a thought anyway?

RHCarpenter said...

The only thing you mentioned that detracts from the power of this painting is the eyes - you can always lighten them, yes? Put a touch of white sparkle there and let it sit for a while. Then...if you wanted, could you collage finer pieces of paper over it in places? For me, it's a rather disturbing image...stern and sad...but that means you got a reaction from me and that's what makes good art = the viewer's reaction, good or bad! I don't mind the crooked nose or the other "problems" you see with it. It may be too thickly painted with the wc sticks but it doesn't show in the photo.

jgr said...

Well, I didn't notice any of the 'mistakes'. To me it's a great painting with very intense expression.

Kathy McChesney said...

Call me crazy, but I really like this piece, other than the diamonds at the bottom. Those dead eyes really invite me in & stir my imagination. Nothing pretty about this face, but it feels very real & powerful to me. The painting has great impact, & I like the strength of character that I perceive. I hope you won't trash it, but instead will work out the bottom portion of the painting, ie, lose the geometry.

As always, your work inspires me. Kathy

Shamus said...

Sometimes a piece takes on a personality of it's own and goes in a direction that you never imagined. That's not always a bad thing. Everyone is always more self critical than they should be. My wife has made me see the beauty in some work that I originally hated. I think that it would be better to let the depth of the painting sit on you a while before you throw it into the flame. I personally think it is wonderful and would hate to know that it is no more.

Billie Crain said...

The first thing I thought when I saw this was the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, looking down at Alice before screaming, "Off with her head!" Not sure why it gave me this impression...(maybe the triangles at the collar area?)but it certainly wasn't a bad impression...at least for me. I love the story.

hwfarber said...

I have seen the "vacant look" in nursing homes--an old soul who can't quite focus. Not your intent, I'm sure, but a meaningful result.

Kris said...

Please do not change it, it looks really interesting the way it is right now.

It is like it has several dimensions. And there is nothing obvious about it, it is just cool!

I like it very much.

Kris

Michelle Himes said...

I like this, Myrna. The eyes need a little work, and I can see that you are not finished with the hand and arm, but it really has the potential, I think, to be a winner. I hope you can resolve it.

Todd Camplin said...

Like the interaction of the face with geometric forms. A kind of cubist abstraction layed on a fleshy Lucian Freud. It is good your putting these out there for critic.

dorothysiclare said...

Other than perhaps bringing in the right cheek a bit with a dark color...I think your painting is amazingly wonderful.

How hard we are on ourselves.

Your terrific!

Kass said...

She has a deviated septum just like mine, so I'm quite drawn to it. You've been with it too long. It's really quite remarkable.

mary hopf said...

I say add a tear under the left eye and you're done! Well maybe the bottom part if you want to make it more cohesive, but the flaws you see just make it interesting to us. Love your blog. Mary Hopf

Gaga said...

Like Liz, I am sure I don't have the eye that you do. However, I do like this piece. Most of the issues you mention are just not problems to me - they add character. Unless you want her to appear very sinister, I would probably just work on her eyes - give her some "whites." I have a habit of taking pieces too far - working too hard to make them just right. Then they look too tight and symmetrical.

Nick said...

I was liking it until I read your post! ha ha But yes, having a problem child on your hands can be a blessing if you have the guts to do something wild and new.....and I know you do.

madeleine said...

I know you've received a lot of comments and advice on this piece already, but i just thought i would share a stranger's perspective.

Lightening the dark "halo" or hair could help, or lifting it if that part is water colour. Also widening the right hand side of the forehead would help balance the face again. I feel the contrast between the yellow and pink in the bottom is a little strong, perhaps try 'pinking' up the yellow a bit?

I agree with RHCarpenter, that the eyes can be livened or brightened back up. I really like the general feel & emotion of the peice itself, and i would say its just midway between two incarnations.

An art teacher once said to me: 'if you don't like how it looks, you have gone too far or not far enough; every painting can have a hundred incarnations if you have the patience to find them'

paintnpencil said...

I like it, it has character of its own. Very striking and not one you forget quickly.

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