I’ve been working on this picture for the last week. It’s a 30 x 40 inch acrylic painting of the old garden. And it’s almost finished. I seem to be going left to right so the whole vertical right side comes next.
Nonetheless it’s kind of a prototype for this motif because I have another version in mind too.
The first painted sketch I made for it was called “the little garden” so I guess the version above shall be considered “the big garden. Little Garden is here:
Lucy and Zoomie photobomb the picture I’m trying to take of a 30 x 40 inch acrylic canvas I found in storage that I’m going to over-paint with landscape. It’s exactly the same size as the painting that has got me stuck — so I could use it to rehearse a second version.
It’s the wrong size to serve as a proper format for an idea that I have in the hopper. But I’m inclined to use it to rehearse the new idea anyway (rather than deepen my obsession with the troublesome existing painting). Changing formats is like changing media — it can shake things up in interesting ways.
It will be interesting sometime later on to recall that this picture was underneath whatever landscape I decide to paint here.
The options are this:
or a more probably an elaborated version, in a different format, of this:
Drawing and redrawing the motif to get myself revved up to continue painting — on this:
Here’s an even closer detail of the drawing. There’s a sort of riot of lines.
I feel an unabashed love for the material appearance of oil pastels (Caran d’Ache Neopastels to be precise). I love to describe somewhat “loopy” forms with them. I love mixing colors by abrasion. I love the way that you can drag one color across another and create as it were almost veils of color.
So even when the situation is stalled (as I make drawings for a painting that I’m unsure how to complete), I can nonetheless love the act of drawing because the materials themselves are so beautiful.
I have rehearsed these forms many times and they still hold my interest. Indeed, it’s stronger than that. They hold me captive.
I continue to resist going forward with my crepe myrtles painting so I make more drawings. The drawing stops on the right because I ran out of motif — would have to invent more landscape to fill that space — which might be an interesting exercise.
So it rains outdoors and rains a little in my head where I lack some of the pizzazz that propels a painting forward. But it’s better to draw, if you’re stuck, than to do nothing. The drawing paper measures 18 x 24 inches.
Here’s the painting I’m endeavoring to unstick:
I am redrawing things that are in the painting, reconnecting myself with individual parts of the motif to get myself ready to continue working on it, stitching the parts more securely together — or preparing to do so — since the real discoveries will happen on the painting’s own surface. These are just ideas.
So I redrew the roses and then added the top of the clump of hydrangeas below these roses, just to help myself think about some ways that these two parts might connect. These are the hydrangeas that I drew in the previous post. The drawing measures 14 x 11 inches and depicts the flowers actual size.
Here’s the whole painting in its present form:
The roses and the hydrangeas are located in the top left hand side.
To get back into the thought world of the flower wall painting, I’ve decided to make studies of various sections of it. Here’s a study for the clump of hydrangea flowers made using Neopastel (Caran d’Ache) on a sheet from a 14 x 17 Strathmore 400 series pad.
Here’s the whole painting as it looks at present.
I have some pictures available in reproductions at Fine Art America. And the Fine Art America website has introduced a feature that makes it easier to imagine the image hanging in a room. With their new feature, you can get a sense of how the image size you’ve chosen might look in an actual room. All that’s left is to imagine how it will look in your room and in your life.
You can find my stuff here:
It’s been a while since I bought some flowers to draw. I need to do that again. Drawing is a way of getting to know a thing. The drawings that I love best have as their primary purpose the recording of a moment. Flowers are wonderful to look at, to hold, to smell and they are wonderful to draw.
You choose an edge and let your eyes travel around that edge, and your hand records the journey — a trip through the flowers. Drawing is freedom.