The Do Over

Have you ever started a painting and just went for it? And then you step back and look at it and feel compelled to say holy crud! IMG_4782

In the early stages a lot of work will look positively awful well, not right. You have a vision and stick with it only to create a miracle of sorts as you pull it together and it becomes the painting you were going for!

Then there is the painting that builds and it does nothing for you.  You stand back to admire and scrutinize your work.  You get nothing.  It is not talking to you at all. There is no choice but to abandon it!  Nothing will salvage it in your mind and you have to either gesso all over it or tear it up and burn it to destroy all evidence.

The do over.  Ugh!  And I am in the middle of a very large one! I was laboring over this painting and I do mean laboring.  It just did not feel right.  My initial drawing was done in haste forcing me to make adjustments as I went along.  Truthfully this happens quite a bit with me.  I get so excited by what I am working on I fail to invest the right amount of time up front.  I will say it again.  This is a big mistake, I have to really plan my work.

To complicate matters more I painted a wash over the whole surface with the wrong colour.  Way too much ochre and not enough yellow. Ugh!

You can do almost anything you want with a work that is well drawn.  Change the colours completely and it will still be believable… but working with a mediocre drawing, well that is a completely different story..  a sad story with nowhere to go but to do over!

As you can see – I have applied two coats of gesso over the painting and have started once again. I can still see bits of my original drawing and where the paint was first applied – this works as a guide for the new and improved version.   Fingers crossed!


I think what it is is that I have been experimenting with different ideas and processes for the past two years I may have forgot my basics.  Or am pushing the boundaries to understand what will work for me and what will not.