Saturday, June 16, 2012

.........Hove Too in the Tempest

I had to quit working on this yesterday afternoon when it got too dark to paint. I paint by natural light and the cloud bands from Hurricane Carlotta started moving in yesterday about noon. It's very dark again today so I guess I'll have to let the storm pass before I can continue on this one. This photo was taken under very grey skylight, so the color is a bit off by the way.

I decided the painting looked like it wanted some palette knife work. Old walls and such can really look texturally satisfying when done with the knife. I intend to add a figure and make a few other changes yet. The composition of this picture is a bit unusual - even dangerous you might say. There is always the risk of dividing interest in a composition with the result that you don't really have a center of interest - picture elements just rattle around everywhere competing for attention. On the other hand, I have no patience for too restrictive formula's. If you were to follow too closely some of the recipes found in a lot of howtoo books you would end up doing  near identical, derivative schlock over and over. Lots of overly proud "artists" do this. In my opinion, you should take "golden rules" with a chaser of scepticism. Leave straight edges and calipers to the draftsmen - you should learn to intuitively "feel" when a proposed composition has reached the zenith of it's potential for expression and that "feel" is only going to come with experience. Study the formula's and understand their intended strategies but remain flexible.  I myself (probably like you) am only in the student phase of learning these things but I've been at it long enough and had enough of failure and success to have gotten to know many of the "traps" on an intimate basis. All said and done, it's a lot more interesting and instructive to "sail the uncharted seas". 
We'll get under way again when this tempest passes and I'll post the final result probably on Monday.

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