Thursday, July 26, 2012

Abstract disaster!

Well, maybe not totally a disaster, but it's close. I need advice... and who better to give me art advice than the Paint Party Friday artists!  

It seemed such a good idea! The abstract is based on this photo from a hike my husband and I took two years ago while camping at Ft Ebey on Whidbey Island, Washington. I love that park! Lot's of cool trails AND ocean beach. 

And this is the disaster: 
I started by texturing the 8x8 inch canvas with molding paste, painted a light green background and started applying paint with a natural sponge. It was looking kind of okay, and then I decided it needed more "light", so I added some back in buff paint with a bit additional green color...  which messed it up. And there she stands. Blah! Lost my urge to finish this little disaster.

Ah well, I may just paint over with gesso and start again. My inclination (now) is to lay the basic color lines down and then use the natural sponge to replicate the leafy look. One should sometimes think things out before one begins. But that would take some of the adventure out, don't you think?  :)

If anyone has advice on how to save my abstract disaster without painting over it entirely, I'd be delighted (and grateful) to hear it. 

For art that actually worked this week, I suggest visiting the Paint Party Friday artists!  

29 comments:

Alicia C said...

I actually really like it! which leads me to think that it's the sort of painting that looks really great from far away, even if from close up not so much. All I would add is a few specific details in fine brushwork or something to add definition (plants, etc) to that light area in the middle. Aside form that its great

Robin Panzer Art said...

I often find that if I walk away from my "disasters" and let them rest for awhile that when I come back a few corrective strokes and the piece turns from something I hated to something I love. Happy PPF! #7 Robin Panzer Art Studio 33

Rhonda said...

I don't think it's a disaster and I don't think you should paint over it with Gesso! Maybe add some yellow highlights and a few more darks to define the bushes a bit further, but that's all. I can totally see the path through the trees. I like it very much!

Ayala Art said...

I think the problem is that a darker color goes "back" in the painting, and you have the road closer to the viewer, so if you lighten up just a bit the ground, and add more foliage to cover a bit more the lighter part, it will come back the way you want.
Just remember, it is back and forth with painting, just steps!
I hope that helps

Maria Ontiveros said...

It doesn't seem like a disaster to me, either. I would go all Monet on this - add some purples and teals and see where it goes from there.
Rinda

soulbrush said...

Don't Gesso over it and start again. Leave it alone for a while, then return and see what 'hits' you first- if you think something needs defining, then do that and walk away again. This is such a hard subject to paint, I admire you. The colours are all the samey samey- I think it needs more variations in them. Show us when it is done.

Lynn said...

I don't have a clue as to HOW to paint! I just do it. And this looks a lot like your photo to me. I see the path, I see the leaves/foliage...it looks good to me. But maybe some of what the others say will help you achieve your goal. Me? Not a clue. Nice as is.

Gloria said...

I think it looks great, but I do agree with Martha (ayala art) about how to bring it out more. No matter Helen, your soul is in it and that's what really counts. Awesome! Happy PPF1

Christine said...

I like it, I don't think it's a disaster at all!

Pointy Pix said...

well. the first thing I thought was that you'd done a pointillism piece! I love it and it definitely has a pointillist feel to it. don't paint over it! perhaps you could add some dots of darker and lighter greens with a fine brush to create more light and shade definition. that way it'll keep that lovely loose pointillism impressionist feel but you'll get the feelong of depth that you want?

Stephanie Mealor Corder said...

I think it looks great- I have a really hard time with landscapes, tho so I'm definitely not the right person to give advice!
I love the way the light beckons you down the path...maybe leave it for a few days and then see if you like it any better?
Happy PPF,
Stephanie

Carolyn Dube said...

I totally agree with Ayala. I think it is great so far just needs a bit of tweaking. I vote no for the gesso over it idea!

carlarey said...

Nooo! Don't paint over it! It's almost there!

I think all it needs is a bit of definition at the edges of the path where it disappears into the distance, just enough to show the path leading off around the curve. And I think I would try adding just a bit of blue here and there in the patch of sunlight, it doesn't show in the photo, but it might be nice to echo that tiny bit I see in foreground of the path.

peggy gatto said...

I love the texture, I love the colors, reminds me of impressionist painter, really lovely!!

Debbie said...

I think it's pretty! You've got some good suggestions here. One thing you could think of adding is a horizon line. You can still keep the abstract feel, but help to create some depth and perspective that way. You might also want to define a focal point. Anyway, just my thoughts. Dont' give up -- it definitely has potential.

p.s. I'm not doing PPF this week. Too busy. I saw your post on Facebook.

ArtMuseDog and Carol said...

I would let this 'sit' ~ do another and then see what you think ~ this one is delightful but if you are not happy with it ~ that is who you need to please ~~ thanks, namaste, (A Creative Harbor)

Mary C. Nasser said...

I like the start of this!
My disaster paintings end up being my favorites because I learn the most from them. :)
♥♥♥
Happy PPF!!
Mary
Mixed-Media Map Art

Tracey Fletcher King said...

don't you dare paint over that... you are so close... I would actually add a few little touches of darker blues and purples into the green ... it will ground it and pull it together... it is so close... please post it again once you have finished it off!!!!

Caitlyn (ladyphlogiston) said...

there's a lot of light green in the photo - both at the curve of the path and as the trees open. Maybe bringing more of that back in would help bring back the structure. But I'm with the other commenters - let it sit a few days and see if it doesn't decide to work better in your head. That happened to me this week, actually.

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

Cant add anymore then what others ahead of me have recommended. If it is Oils then you can work it out but if its watercolors then its harder. Martha and Robin pretty much nailed it. Fun piece tho. HPPF.

Gloria said...

Try looking at it in a mirror or upside down for awhile and see if you can decide what you don't like about it. I don't think it needs too much. And you can paint over any dry spots with a different color, right? So if you don't like the lower area, just paint over it. But set aside(where you can't see it) for a day or two so you will see it with "new" eyes! Don't worry, you can make it work to your satisfaction. :-)

Melisa said...

I like it! The only problem I see is that the trail takes you out of the picture at the top. I'd sponge just a little more foliage over the top part, like the overhanging branches in the photo. You want your eye to go down the trail, into the distance of the painting but not completely out.

Daniele Valois said...

I think you just need to step away for a bit. Even a month sometimes allows you to come back with new insight and vision.

Kat Griffin said...

I like it as it is. It is a wonderful abstracted take of that photo !
-KAT-

Sabina said...

Don't beat yourself up; you don't need to start over--Really don't we all post WIPs sometimes?

All the basic elements are there already. It just needs another couple of layers here and there, for more light, between the branches in the middle, which would also make the trees look more graceful, and some more dark tones, for added texture in the trees. It'll probably take way less time than you think!

Carol said...

I think it's great and has wonderful potential! Sometimes we just need a break before finishing.

Natasha said...

I wouldn't gesso over all of it. Just add another layer, I don't think it would probably take much to get it to where you see it in your head. I am definitely an advocate of leaving it a few days to see if you get hit by inspiration before the gesso comes out! :)

denthe said...

Keep adding layers on top. It'll come out great!

Ros said...

I like it

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