06 July 2009

Fiddling with Bad Paintings . . .

This is not a very satisfying watercolor sketch -- looks almost half-hearted, doesn't it? There are parts and bits I do like (the rocks) but all together it just does not work.

So the question is: do we trash these "almost" paintings? Do we save them to remind us of our failures?

What if -- one of the greatest tools we creative types have -- steps to the forefront, maybe not immediately but certainly at some point. I painted this little piece several months ago and just stumbled upon it on my computer this afternoon as I was attempting to clean up files, etc. I looked at it and "what if...?" appeared, lurking on the sidelines of my semi-active brain.

So, I pulled a copy into a software program for photos and digitally played with it -- here's what I came up with:

Now, this I like!

It's dramatic, an intriguing study for a night seascape painting perhaps? And some of the little "blips" that came through on the scan appear to be stars and constellations. Also, I think this would work better in other media, such as acrylic, oil or perhaps pastels.

I will keep this playful piece in my computer in the "must paint" file. It will spark my creative imagination to try some night scenes, give me a springboard from which to work.

We learn more from failure than from success -- good to remember!


Anonymous said...

I have often thought this with my work, I play around with levels and curves to see how I could improve the image. Get some great ideas.

Kelly M. said...

Yes, Carolann! I think your term "play around" is key -- unless we're willing to fiddle about, tinker here and there, play the "what if" -- well, it might be a bit boring?