Sunday, September 7, 2008

Look familiar?

I started a new painting yesterday! ...Sort of.

This is actually the same painting as a drawing that I did a couple of years ago....
But how can that be?

Soon after I finished this drawing, "Hawaiian Ginger," I decided to order enlarged prints of the original drawing. I ordered most prints on paper, and thought I'd try one on canvas. Usually when I enlarge my colored pencil drawings onto fine art paper, they come out looking like pastels- each pencil stroke becomes enlarged and looks like a pastel stroke- a tad bit softer and lighter, too. It usually looks pretty nice.

Not so much with canvas.

I am not sure what went wrong, but the drawing on canvas came out nasty, darker, hard looking... Really awful.
I was so disgusted with the canvas print that I threw it into the back of my art closet. I had no idea what to do with it, but I wasn't going to just throw it away, since that's a waste of money- and prints on canvas and mounted on the stretchers aren't exactly cheap. I thought maybe one day I'd just paint on top of the ugly pigmented canvas and enhance it somehow. But I had my doubts about that. Helping the monstrocity seemed impossible. It sat in there for over a year.

After finishing the palm tree, I was taking a bit of time (eh, a couple days) to figure out what I was going to paint next. I kept thinking about that canvas sitting in the back of the art closet- so yesterday became "one day."

I figured I'd change some things, as there isn't really much sense in me having two original pieces of art that look exactly the same. The most obvious thing to change was the background: A blue sky, instead of the white that it was in the original photo I took (it was overcast that morning).
Then I started working on the leaves.

As I began painting, I had the same brush in hand that got me through all of those palm fronds. It worked great for the sky, but I put one coat of paint on the leaves and it just wasn't happening for me, so I took a break. Today, I picked up my absolute faaaaaavorite brush- the one that got me through Design I in college. Ahhhhh....
I found that the leaves came much more easily. Maybe having a coat of paint already on them helped. Maybe the fact that this brush holds 10x as much paint as the other REALLY helped. I am much happier with the blending, and it seems like the painting is progressing much faster now! Since I changed the sky, I decided to go a different route with the leaves, too- I added more yellow to them and brightened them up. A lot.

In the photo of the new painting, the sky is just about done. The flowers have not been touched at all, and you can probably see that they have a much rougher look. The green leaves all have one coat of paint, some have two, and you can probably tell the difference there, too. The leaf on the far left side, in the middle, really shows the "before" paint, and the leaves around it are all "afters." I still need to perfect some of the blending here and there, but so far, I'm happy with this!


Conrad McKee said...

I would not have thrown it away. Why did you not try and sell it on the many Canvas Prints sales sites

SG said...

Well, I didn't throw it away... it just took a period of hibernation in a closest for a year :)

It's now revamped and a whole new piece! Sort of. Thanks for the website!