It doesn’t happen very often but sometimes a painting gets laid off… because it isn’t working.
When that happens an artist has to decide whether to destroy it, donate it, or salvage it in which case you have to figure out when a painting doesn’t work.
Such was the case with a painting that I completed in 2012. It was shown in a couple of different galleries and it just languished on the wall without selling. It did receive some compliments regarding the colors in it, but still there it was on the wall. It wasn’t what I would call a bad painting, but something was certainly lacking.
So, I took it home and decided to give it a good look over after having been away from it. My response after seeing it with a fresh eye was Yuk! No wonder it hasn’t sold. The painting was…well…YAWN, boring!
When I painted it I was using a different studio, and despite being a nice set up it was prone to having distractions. I never felt at home in that surrounding and wasn’t very happy. So maybe my mood was influencing me. Now in my comfort zone and regular studio space I realized that my painting never achieved what the original scene upon which it was based offered.
I realized I needed more contrast, punch up some of the color intensity, redesigning some sections and even eliminating some distracting areas that didn’t support the composition. So I removed the varnish on the painting, and reworked it. Now the painting is back to work in that it captures the mood I experienced when I happened upon this scene. Now, I don’t yawn when I look at the painting.
So what do you think about the changes? Click on the images for a larger view.
As an update to this post, I placed the above painting in one of my eBay auctions with a Buy it Now option. It immediately sold through that option at my asking price. So, rescuing the painting and making some adjustments gave it new life and a new home. If you’re an artist perhaps try such a approach with your own paintings that have been “fired.”