Monday, April 09, 2007

How to Ruin a Painting - 101

Ok, so the title is a li'l over damatic, but I'm going to show you step by step how to ruin a painting...
All was going well until STEP: #5 onwards...

STEP # 1:
painting of a whale - process

Take a spare watercolour board and draw the picture, sketching with the paint to show definition... Got it?

STEP # 2:

Decide on some bright colours to use and continue building up layers of brightness.
Remember your motto, "Expressing life through colour..."

STEP # 3:

Continue with layers of bright and vivid sunset colours.
This painting now takes shape and is working out rather well...
This would have been a good place to stop and reconsider
the options.

STEP # 4:

Going gangbusters - the whole painting is coming together nicely. Then, this is probably where you should stop and call it quits by doing nothing more on the background... If you've been fortunate enough to get some honest feedback, you probably would have been told to concentrate just on getting the whale defined...

STEP # 5:
This is where it all goes horribly wrong...
Know when to stop! Don't think by adding some more red colour to the sunset sky that it will liven things up more.
And, PLEASE, if you're using vivid transparent colours - don't go randomly using pastel and opaque - (colours that cover up the areas already painted)

STEP #6:

Perhaps this should come under the title " How to rescue a ruined painting"..?
So this is where I am up to on this and totally stuck... I've painted over the lighter colours with mixes of paynes gray, permanent purple madder, quinacridone red violet. Repainted the sea and sky with yellow to diffuse the intense red "hit" of the previous pic but I'm no longer enjoying the process. I'll give it one more go and then decide if what I've done has worked. Otherwise I'll start another whale picture on actual acrylic board instead of watercolour board.
Thanks for your patience Callie - one of these months, you'll have a whale from New Zealand hangin on your wall...

Art Expression


  1. Anonymous12:51 pm


    It is the most beautiful painting. You are critical on yourself...I want it...Just tell me how to go about paying and you sending....

    it's gorgeous!

  2. Anonymous1:26 pm


    you have a huge comment on my board..Just for you my handsome friend.


  3. Oh mhy!! I'm speechless. Thanks for the kind words and the post on your blog...
    Getting Callies Fluke is easy - I will e-mail you for details... and, please,.. it's a gift - so no payment required. When I'm 'rawkin famous' (lol) you can "boast" 'bout how you got an early original...
    I'll post the final pic here soon.

  4. Peter
    Can't get enough of this final solution, it is beautiful, is it really painted? To me it looks like a photo.

    (( hug ))

  5. Anna-Lys, thank you so much for your kind words. Yes, it really is painted, but has many thin layers of paint on it and is painted from a photo. I think I'm beginning to 'like' it again...
    Take care

  6. Terrific entry. I think everyone goes through those stages - "it needs a little..." - "oh NO"...."well, if I just add..."
    Every piece of bead embroidery I do (which is extremely labor intensive), about 10 hours in, I think, "It's absolute shite. What were you thinking?"
    And then, mostly it works out.
    Wonderful paintings and so much fun to see the process documented.

  7. Thanks lj for taking the time to comment - much appreciated - and I see more than two comments to some of my posts...ver kind of you.
    I know what you mean when lots of hours have gone in to something creative - it HAS to work out!
    'Til next time

  8. I hear ya - knowing when to stop! But don't you love it when you save it and something quite amazing happens?


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