July 29, 2005
Sometimes you just have to stop, step away from the art disaster you are in the process of creating, forget about it, give it a little time, and then come back and try it again later.
This is an Indian from my sketch book that I really liked, so I painted it… but I just could not make it work. My first painted picture does not even look like an Indian. Nick called him Elvis. Sometimes paintings fall together for you, sometimes they dont. This one didn’t.
I had a little time late this afternoon and was flipping thru my watercolor sketch book when I came across this picture. I started to tear it out of the book because it is so embarrassing, but then thought, “I wonder if I can salvage this”. I scrubbed a bunch of it off, and worked some brighter colors into the background. I also widened the bridge of the nose and fixed a couple of other facial features.
When you are in the process of painting a disaster and have blown hours and hours into it, you are very hesitant to scrub away all those hours of work. But when you come back to it months later you dont remember all the time spent and can have more of a “go for it” attitude.
If you have the luxury of time, put away the problem painting and try it again later… much later.