Friday, October 8, 2010

"First Day of School"

Some days it takes me awhile to figure out what I'm doing...
:O) who me?
In the past, I've usually done small paintings using a single figure. This one started out that way, but I wanted the combined figures of a tiny boy riding a big draft horse - all on a small 8 x 10" canvas. That part was clear. What I didn't consider when I started the painting, was that I needed a place for this horse to go. Because of the size constraints of this canvas and the horses walking movement, it made things too boxed in. After about 8 hours, and three separate tries, I finally worked in a destination. The up side to this particular "exercise" (if you can call it that) is that it gave me some great ideas for a larger painting. Of course, I'll need to add that to my growing list of futures.

To show my dilemma, I've posted my first attempt above. As you can see, there is just no room (visually) for the horse to move. So I set this sketch aside on a small table easel, where I can use it as reference for my next try.

This time, I actually thought I could pull it off. I loved how the boy was turning out, so I didn't want to quit. I spent about two hours fussing around before I realized this would never work. Any type of frame I would eventually put on this piece, would stop the active quality of what I'd first intended. So by now, I'm losing my fascination for this subject altogether and think wine might be a better alternative...

...alas, I plunge ahead!

First Day of School 8 x 10" oil/linen panel

Again on my table easel, I replace the first sketch with this (slightly better) second one and use it as reference for the final painting above. It reads much better now and fits well in a frame. The horse is not as big as I would've liked, but you can easily see it's a draft breed.

The moral of today's struggles:
Creativity cannot be measured in time, since the artist can only succeed through constant practice.

Happy Painting!

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