Friday, May 10, 2013

Sometimes Ya Just Gotta Turn Things Upside Down!

There is this thing that happens to an artist while working in the studio. It is inevitable  We all experiences it from time to time. It's like hitting a stone wall. Let me explain...You have this painting in progress.  The problem is...it's stalled. There is no progress.  It's trapped in a place. We stand looking, realizing that there are some very obviously things wrong, but more importantly...there is something elusively wrong too.   Many times we continue to layer paint, add elements, squint at it, turn our heads to one side, stand with puzzled faces and sometimes just plain walk away in disgust!

My friend, Riitta and I also sometimes chose to put those paintings in 'time out.'  I call it putting it in the closet. Riitta calls it the punishment box!  We chose to laugh in spite of our frustrations, because in reality sometimes you just gotta laugh!  So why the rambling over this inevitable circumstance?  Well.... I've got this on an easel wasting the days away in a suspended purgatory...

Painting in Progress

So...the obvious problems?  Just above the mid-level area of this painting, the colors need to change. Obviously?... This painting is far from worked to completion.  So why am I 'stuck?'  It's been like this for days, without an answer.  Sometimes, I will send an image to Riitta to get her take.  But this time...I have just let it sit.  Deep breaths...

Detail - Painting in progress
Okay...so here's my solution. Well, it's not MY solution, it's one of those 'tricks' we are taught along the way. Perhaps, it's just a coping skill we learn...ya know, the skills all of us employ on a daily basis in an attempt to stay sane?!!  I am going to put a Voodoo curse on this painting. Just Kidding!  I thought I had ya there! (wink) I am going to simply turn this painting upside down and start fresh...well, kinda fresh.  I have something on this canvas and I am going to try and re-address it from another perspective.

Many times this technique will help me re-establish a color palette direction. Sometimes it will allow me to correct composition issues.  Sometimes it is just as simple as forcing myself to enter stroke marks from a different direction which can change the overall energy or flow of the painting.  I might also cover a few areas that aren't working for me with gesso.  We shall see what develops in the upside down world.

Regardless...this painting needs the big 'switcherooy!'

So today...I'm flipping out!... uh wait... No.  This painting will be flipping over. Yep...Not me, the painting.  Got it. (Sometimes it feels like both.) Ha! The key to being able to do this? Letting go... Whatever I thought this painting might be, is a thing of the past.  Let's see what happens...

"Sometimes you have to let go to see if there was anything worth holding on to." Anonymous 

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Linking this to Paint Party Friday

18 comments:

ike said...

I love these flowing 'wavy' paintings you do. Gorgeous colours on here and I am sure it will hit you with a sudden burst of energy when your flow arrives again. I tried turning on my head to view it upside down and you might definitely be onto something there :-D
Happy PPF !!
IKE
#24

Korrie@RedHenHome said...

Changing your perspective is always a good idea! It works in life as well as in paintings ;-)

Grammy Goodwill said...

Letting go can be hard. Thinking of you....

Nic McLean said...

I know what you mean about sometimes feeling stuck. I often go over the same area multiple times only to look back at progress photos and realise I preferred the very first version after all!!
I really like this piece - it makes me think of a very arid desert like place with shimmering heat haze and dry cracked earth. I'll look forward to seeing how it progresses after you turned it upside down!

Kim said...

This is gorgeous and fascinating to see how much it changes if you flip it. HPPF!

Lorraine said...

love the bright colours happy ppf

Twice Nice said...

Oh, I hate getting stuck, but I sometimes think that is better than thinking I'm done and then seeing it later and figuring out I've missed an opportunity. When I'm doing my rug hooking the one thing that often helps me the most is taking a photo of it and then popping the photo up on the computer. For some reason seeing it from that perspective shows it at a different level. Parts that need changed just jump off the screen. Weird, but it works for me! Can't wait to see the end result, hope you'll post it!

Paper rainbow said...

Time out for paintings! This made me smile, I do just that, they go in the naughty corner for a while in the hope they will behave better. Love the idea of turning it upside down..maybe I will try that with a few of my difficult ones. :) Thank you so much for your kind comments Btw :)

Cat Beringer said...

I love all the layers, it reminds me of layers of earth. I am sure that this painting has learned it's lesson in time out!

Giggles said...

Wow this is such an authentic post! I often feel this way... but you're right turn it up. Reminds me years ago when I was painting my house...I started painting the wall a color I thought I wanted.... it stayed that way for a month...not me to leave it... but I knew something wasn't right....later down the road I realized it was the right color wrong tone to match the other rooms...I muted it more and it was fabulous!!

Good job, new perspective is always good, sometimes it takes a while to figure it out!! Like a month...lol

Hugs Giggles
P.S....I think the painting is beautiful so far!!

www.dorissdaughter.com said...

Your painting is beautiful but it is amazing how a different perspective can change the ambience!:) HPPF

denthe said...

Can't really see anything "wrong" with this, but you're right, when you feel it's not good you have to do something else. Love the idea of the punishment box :-) Usually when I'm stuck, I leave it on the easel in the livingroom, where I see it every day, and usually after a few days I can pinpoint what's wrong with it. Turning it upside down is also a really good way to change your perspective. Looking forward to seeing what you do with it ....

Deneen@dreaming-n-color said...

Sounds like a life lesson! I love the painting already. Can't wait to see it finished! I like flipping...

Netty said...

Your work in progress is stunning, with so much vitality and movement am sure whatever you choose to do the results will be wonderful. Happy PPF, Annette x

http://nettysartadventures.blogspot.co.uk/

Corrine at sparkledaysstudio.com said...

Love that you are "flipping"...I like to turn it every which way when it's not working and see what speaks to me.....hope your painting is now talking back to you. Happy PPF

bellefrogworks said...

Wonderful post - I really like your painting - can't wait to see where it goes upside down!

Karen Smithey said...

I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes I just have to let a painting take a break--or maybe it's me that's taking a break!

Annabelle said...

Been there , done it...on numerous times. Turning it upside down will without doubt give you a different viewpoint with lots to ponder on. My favourite section of it is up to the thin blue line.....maybe from that point you could tone your palette into deeper complimentary jewel colours....just a thought.
I'm sure your painting will direct you on the right path.

Thanks for sharing.
Annabelle O,O