So, d'ja ever start a project that you were really excited about but when you got half way done, you decided you hated it? It happens to me more than I'd like to admit.
I got so excited when I decided that make a painting of McCarter Pond in Fair Haven NJ. Fair Haven is the town I grew up in and McCarter Pond was our neighborhood spot to go ice skating when the weather was right.
I had the picture all figured out in my head and I made what I thought was a really source image and started right in.
About halfway through the process I looked and thought, "Meh." At first I couldn't figure out where I'd gone wrong. I took a photo of it and looked at that and saw right away that everything in the painting seemed static to me. There was no "flow."
So, I got my source out again and realized that the painting I had made didn't look much like the source at all! In the painting none of the figures touched each other. (Well almost none.) That made everything look very far from everything else. Since each person or group of people were isolated there was no reason to keep my eyes moving through the painting in the way I wanted. Each group was a vignette, but not a part of the whole.
So, I started over. Because the figures overlap in places there's a greater sense of motion and connectedness about the painting. The color in the new painting is more muted but will be fully colorful when the painting is done.
The Second painting
Like I said, this is a problem I deal with all too often. But although I've painting as an educated artist for two years now, I have to remember that I've ONLY been painting for two years now. Every time I start a new picture I have to remember to take stock of how I want the finished painting to look and make corrections before I get very involved. So much of my time is wasted in going back and fixing blunders. But I will continue to learn and very soon now I think I'll be past the part of the process that makes me second guess myself. I'll be able to see the source and faithfully execute it in oils.
I feel confident in this.