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Nickel
11-16-2006, 09:07 PM
IX
MASS DRAWING: PRACTICAL

Try always to do as much as possible with one stroke of the brush; paint has a vitality when the touches are deft, that much handling and continual touching kills.

It is often necessary when a painting is nearly right to destroy the whole thing in order to accomplish the apparently little that still divides it from what you conceive it should be. It is like a man rushing a hill that is just beyond the power of his motor-car to climb, he must take a long run at it. And if the first attempt lands him nearly up at the top but not quite, he has to go back and take the long run all over again, to give him the impetus that shall carry him right through.

Reading through this chapter, notes after notes after notes. Lots of instruction of things to practice. I wish I had a teacher here just to
show me...
I have a friend that paints, she is at least 90 and she has been painting
for a very long time. She would not agree with going back and doing it over,
taking a long run and start over. She told me, why not do it right the first time? Her statement has stuck with me. I wish I could get it right the first time, not always, but I work at it.

azulparsnip
11-19-2006, 10:54 AM
I totally agree with Harold here. I think there is more involved than "doing it right" as important as that is. Often I like some little nuances expressed or alot of good stuff in the work and become reticent to ruin it . Another fear is encountered here. This is a hinderance. A distracting vibe.
( The fear of getting in a rut and sticking with the famialar losing the creative center he expressed in a previous chapter being the other fear)

Sam Cree
11-19-2006, 04:10 PM
It is often necessary when a painting is nearly right to destroy the whole thing in order to accomplish the apparently little that still divides it from what you conceive it should be.

David Leffel, as you guys may know, has said a similar thing, that "the artist is the great destroyer." He meant, I believe, not that what has been already painted is necessarily "wrong," but that getting the desired effect often takes more than one layer of paint. What you did first may have some very desirable effects, but it is just a step along the way towards the final effect. In other words, the artist will "destroy" it by painting over it. I think that's what Speed meant, what do you guys think?

Sam Cree
11-19-2006, 05:45 PM
I totally agree with Harold here. I think there is more involved than "doing it right" as important as that is. Often I like some little nuances expressed or alot of good stuff in the work and become reticent to ruin it .

Yeah, I think you said it better than I did; the same thing has been a problem for me. When I first start painting, I may see something that I've done that I like, but before I've really gotten enough paint down. Then I'm reluctant to paint over it, even though I must, since the painting takes on a much fuller or richer aspect when enough paint has been applied.

I saw a video fairly recently that my instructor was showing of John Howard Sanden painting a portrait. Sanden had the eyes in fairly well, really looking good, when he suddenly took his brush and obliterated them, smeared them into gray shapes that basically covered the entire eye sockets (I think they are called orbits?). But then he painted back into the grayed orbits, recovering the eyes. This time they looked alot sharper than they had the first time.

Precious Mazie
11-19-2006, 07:19 PM
Hi Everyone,
I have not read the chapter yet and from what Nickel said there is a lot to try out. But having babysat all weekend and having company arrive on Monday for Thanksgiving I will not be reading much, (will try to get some reading done tonight) and not able to try anything until company leaves on Sunday. So if you don't hear from me at least you know why!

I have to agree though with what you all have said about being reluctant to paint over something that you like but is not what your vision. Fear that as you paint over it the result will be less that what now exists. But the other side is true too... that the more you play with a paint stroke more often than not it gets worse.

I must say for my self I have rarely had a finished work be the physical example of my original vision.

Well will see you again next weekend and hopeful I will have the chapter read and some work done on the examples. Happy Thanks-giving to y’all!
Debby

Nickel
11-19-2006, 10:12 PM
Hi Sam, Azulparsnip, Debby, I enjoyed reading your thoughts. I actually don't have a problem with taking turpentine, wiping a painting all the way off . That is why this lady had this thought about why not do it right in the first place. To me, that is where Speed was coming from when he wrote to take another running start up the hill. And I guess, plenty of artists go from the cartoon to the finished painting in steps. I do try and let a picture grow in it's own right. By that I mean, walking away, coming back with fresh eyes to see what is happening. Hope you all have a good Thanksgiving. I'll spend some time in this chp. this week. Try to start a new chp/s next week after the holiday. :wave: