Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Stepping Aside

Sometimes it so happens that I just don't get the color right in the very first attempt.  And I realize this only as the painting starts to take shape.  Once I start a painting I usually try to paint as quickly as I can so that I don't loose the spontaneity.  I don't put the painting away or start working on a new piece unless I'm done with my current painting.  It helps me to stay connected with the piece until it's done and signed.   I like to think about the scene all the time, try to visit the place in my head and just relive the moment as I paint.  But sometimes; no matter what I do, how thoughtfully I establish the values, the painting just doesn't work for me.  And I do not sign off a painting until I'm very well convinced about it and feel like I've done justice to the subject.  So what do you do when a painting fails ??? Well, I wont lie, I get very frustrated when I'm not able to nail a subject.  Mainly because most of the times, the subject is so compelling that its just too hard to stop thinking about it.  It will keep lingering in my head all the time.  Its like a bug that to just needs to be fixed.  Since nothing good can come out of frustration,  I step aside from the painting for some time.  It's just a way for me to buy some thinking time.  These paintings sit in my closet until I get back to them.
First attempt 18x24
"Road Trip" turns out to be one such painting that sat in my closet for almost 2 months.  I connected with this scene because of the bumpy turning road, the electricity poles (something I was painting for the first time) and the shape of the tree.  So there was more than a thing that kept me glued to it.  The first attempt was on an 18x24 panel, not a square composition.  The second time, I tried changing the composition to a square and guess what, it worked !!

Finishing this painting was such a relief.  Although it took 2 whole months of thinking time, it seemed worth the wait once the painting was done.

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Happy Painting!
What do you do when a painting fails?  Do you have a method to cope?  Share your experiences in the comments below.