View Full Version : pasture

11-29-2003, 10:01 AM

Title: pasture
Year Created: 2003
Medium: Acrylic
Surface: Canvas
Dimension: 36 x 28
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

I am so stuck on this piece I do not know where to go. I know it needs allot of work but I AM STUCK...:) All I do is look at it on the wall!!!!
Any comments suggestions welcome

am so stuck on this piece I do not know where to go. I know it needs allot of work but I AM STUCK...:) All I do is look at it on the wall!!!!
Any comments suggestions welcome

pero lane
11-29-2003, 11:15 AM
My only advice would be to add more color variation to the cactus...it seems flat. All else is ok.:)

11-29-2003, 11:58 PM
Hi love the composition, but would like to see more depth and the source of light more defined, would love to see the end product. Nicely done. More shadow under the skull perhaps?? On discussion we (a fellow artist and myself) more work needed on the cactus to seperate it from the foreground.


11-30-2003, 01:21 AM
I think your next step should be to add some detail to the cactus. Maybe some tufts of needles as well as the color variation already mentioned.

11-30-2003, 04:39 AM
It has a lot of potential.
Usually when I get stuck on something, it works to set it aside and come back when the mood is right.
Also, I usually change the COLORS when I come back.
Take a look at your colors and see if maybe you'd prefer it in a different palette.

Go with whatever feels right.


11-30-2003, 06:56 PM
Thanks everyone !!!! I plan on working on it tonight. For some reason I am scared to touch it....:( Yes I need to get that flatness out of the cactus and perk up some color somewhere and the light source I need to make my mind up where it is coming from. Thank you all very much !!

11-30-2003, 09:07 PM
You were frank in saying you know that something is wrong and wanted suggestions on what to do to save this work.

Therefore I suggest the following:

I consider what has been done so far as an underpainting. Not something that needs a few quick brush strokes for a speedy finish but a work that needs more time put into it then you have spent already. If you cant agree to that then I don't think there is much more I can add.

Assuming you do agree...then decide what is the center of interest. I assume it is the skull. If that is true then bring the skull up in key....(lighter) and put its cast shadow deeper...(darker). Also color the shadow....not make it a black glob.

Then focus the light in the painting on the skull....and shade everything else off into semi darkness. You do this by putting on a series of glazes. Match the sky to the halo effect you are trying to generate with the skull the hipoint in the halo.

Then go to the cactus. Change it from a cleche to a living plant. That means the various leaves go in different directions, have discolorations, damage (eaten away..spoiled, etc). The cactus may have buds on the leaves that run along the edge. The buds may or may not be in bloom but they are of different color...most often a violet red. The leaves have splines....use a rigger and an assortment of grays...light to dark...to paint in the spines...the lightest near the center of interest.

Paint the foreground...make it interesting with rocks, grasses...weeds...perhaps a bug or two.

Finish the painting with a dilute (very dilute) glaze of a color that you will paint over everything to give it a cohesive tone. You do that only when the painting is dry.

Then sign the painting and enter it in a contest...you just might win.


12-01-2003, 09:43 AM
Fantastic suggestions Myles thank you thankyou !
I know my catus's are sooo cleche, and its a shame I live int the middle of millions ! I should of mentioned it in the begining that I too consider it a underpainting, but I was just so stuck !!!! Thank you again for excellant suggestions..:)

12-01-2003, 03:31 PM
You could give your cactus character in the form of leaf damage and deformities. This could also add color: yellows, browns, violets.

12-04-2003, 10:14 AM
Well here is a updated picture. I have worked on it a bit , still a ways to go but I am a little more satisfied with it. Thanks everyone for your help.

12-04-2003, 12:59 PM
I think the first one was more stunning.
flatter except for the rocks below the skull
flatter is not bad.
in fact the intereaction of strong arcs in th e first one
was so gripping I thought it would be a good idea to
flatten the little rocks and reduce detail down there.
what you have done increases realism
I guess I favour expressionism

12-04-2003, 02:43 PM
Thanks Jerry for your post. I never have shown my work so its really nice to get different ideas from folks.:0 I am trying to learn to paint a little more realicticly. I really enjoy the southwestern theme.