The big koi drawing got a rework.
A few days ago (April 2nd) I posted a large preparatory drawing that I have used to rehearse a large painting that’s in the works. The drawing is 50 x 42.5 inches large. One challenge an artist faces making large works is photographing them. In my case there isn’t enough natural light available in the room where I work to get a good photograph. Doing photography outdoors, of course, introduces its own challenges (not the least of which is how to drag the drawing and its huge heavy drawing support outside).
Well, I got the drawing and its heavy support outside. But then I had to locate a place with indirect light because the first and easiest location for my photo shoot produced the image seen below. Very charming, but not descriptive of the drawing.
The photo did however prompt a wonderful idea: the photograph with its “clouds” was so lovely.
Why not make those effects part of the drawing itself?
And I have since altered the drawing (new version at the top of the post) to introduce some of these lights that remind me of cloud reflections floating over the koi pond. The over-exposed sections of light, made more dramatic in contrast to various shadows, are not real clouds, but they’re close enough to push the picture in that direction, and do note that these effects were still natural ones.
These were lights and shadows I found in nature. I’m still imitating nature here.
Certainly it’s possible to continue a process of this sort, I’ve taken the reworked drawing outdoors again and repeated this process.
New lights and shadows in new locations on the reworked drawing.
Portraying Nature is a complex endeavor. Nature is everywhere. It’s in your head as well as “out there.” Time is a part of Nature too.
The stages are part of the lovely game of painting. Taking the picture into this direction is, granted, not the same thing as making a faithful representation of the motif en plein air. But it is nevertheless a kind of naturalism and a kind of fidelity too.