Saturday, February 20, 2016

Can you save a painting? Maybe.

Upside Down Creamer.  Mixed Media.
Approximately 8 x 8 inches. 
I believe I mentioned that I was going to try more still lifes?   I'm going to keep trying, but this is more of an example of what happens when a still life goes bad.  You can see my grandmother's creamer, and my first crack at the still life below. 

What happened?  Well, I think I panicked, which means I got super heavy with my watercolors, and then I threw caution to the wind because things were going so badly.  It was painful to look at. (ultramarine blue, hansa yellow medium, and cad red deep).  It's the very bottom photo.

I decided to back over with some American Journey watercolors--white, lamp black, and coffee with cream (is that not the best named color, ever?).  And then, I added in a little bit of Caran D'ache Crayon in yellow, red, and blue.  The only parts of the original painting left visible are the shapes of color along the left.   And, if you ask me this painting is confused about what the heck is happening.  Part line, half a deep grey, have colorful......

So, because I knew it wasn't right, I went back into it today with an overlay of the original watercolors pus indigo.  Final result at the top.  Am I in love with this painting?  No.  Is it working enough that it won't be niggling at the back of my brain?  Maybe.  But, I can at least tolerate looking at it.  What did I do?  I washed out the lines that were not working.  I added more cohesive areas of color, and balanced them out.  And, I cropped a little bit.  The original painting is about 8 x 10.

What do you do when your paintings aren't working?



The 2nd Iteration.
The 1st Iteration.