View Full Version : WIP--Lonely People

01-26-2008, 04:15 PM
First post in this part of the watercolor forum--hope this is the right place for this as I haven't finished it yet...
This is one of my older paintings--mid 2006, I think. Any advice I can get on this would be fantastic...I'm considering just cropping off the right hand side up to the little cup or the foot of the guy sitting against the wall (and finishing off that part) or maybe I'll just start the whole thing over. There's no mask in this at all--just luck getting the light areas on the ground area where the shadows are. Here's the details: Watercolor (probably MaimeriBlu) on Arches 140 lb. Rough--1st go on Rough paper; 1/2 sheet--15" x 22". Thanks to Hugh Hill (RIL) for part of this image (left side of painting).

C & C always welcome...let me know what you think--good or bad.
Btw...I hope it's ok to post paintings in different areas on the same day. I know about the rule of not posting more than one painting a day in the gallery but wasn't sure if it's ok to post something here too on the same day. Let me know...thanx.



01-27-2008, 01:30 AM
I think it is a great start. At first I thought the figure in the middle was walking towards us. But then I looked for his face and found hair? So maybe I'm wrong. Maybe he is walking away? Definint him more would make it better.

01-27-2008, 05:30 AM
I think it conveys loneliness a it is.


01-27-2008, 06:47 AM
I think it is a very emotional picture.
The fact that the three people walking by seem to be on their own, conveys the impression that a lot of people are lonely, besides the obvious ones.
Maybe the title should be "All the Lonely People"

01-27-2008, 07:02 AM
This is definitely worth finishing, and it won't take much to do that because it is almost there already.

I don't think you should crop the bottom of the painting, I like the shadows of the people passing in front of the homeless man and off the page.

You might consider cropping a little off the left side so the woman's arm is just off the picture. You can try it with a mat when you go to frame it and see if you like it.

You could finish the homeless man's face a little more (not too detailed, but at least suggest features). He needs a shadow on the ground on the left as well since the light is hitting his right side like it is the people walking by.

This is a very poignant composition. As the others have said, it conveys loneliness and insularity where each person is walking around in their own bubble.

BTW, the Studio is definitely the place to post unfinished works or works you have questions about. Posting a painting in the Gallery and another in the Studio is OK as well since they are two different sub-forums. :thumbsup:


lyn lynch
01-27-2008, 08:01 AM
I think it is an excellent concept.

The wall edge (on the left) is going to conflict with the hard edge of the mat so you'll end up cropping it. The crop will take some drama away from the sitting man.

Consider expanding the awning all the way to the left crop.

I find the people coming and going to be a bit confusing. Maybe some value shifts in there. The palette definitely contributes to the scene.

It's a good concept, I like it.

01-27-2008, 05:34 PM
Thanks everyone for the input on this...

Saroabelle--yes, he's walking away...in the ref pic, he IS walking towards the viewer but, when I painted him, I had decided (at the time) that I wanted him walking away to increase that "lonely/ignored" feeling...probably will change it.

Thanks Yorky--that's exactly the emotion I was going for...

Frodon--I was actually going to call it Lonely People, Silver Cup (based on the song; not sure if "All of the Lonely People" is the name of that song...

Sylvia--thanks for your input on this. I know it wouldn't take too much to finish this; I just wasn't sure whether it was worth the effort to keep the "homeless man" or if I should crop it to the group of pedestrians. I would never even think of cropping the bottom--those shadows are my favorite part! When you talk about the crop on the left side, are you talking about the person with the bag (who is supposed to be a guy) or the old woman between the two? If I do keep the homeless man--which I already tried painting once/scrubbed out--I hope to only do a suggested face...thanx.

Fookie--I knew this was an great concept! I love the idea of taking certain phrases from old songs and turning them into something that has some real emotion to it. As to the wall edge, I wish that I hadn't painted it so close to the edge--I'll figure it out eventually. At first, I didn't understand the expansion of the awning but now I get it--thanx for the great idea! I wasn't too sure about the background people--I didn't want them competing with the main "show" so just left them kind of muted. I'll see what I can do about that area.

Thanx again for all of your help/ideas--this forum is the BEST!!!! Be back later as soon as I can get back to painting on this--Monday, at the earliest (aaargh--life gets in the way...).


01-27-2008, 05:48 PM
I was talking about the person on the left with the briefcase/handbag over his shoulder.

BUT, now that you mentioned cropping out the homeless man, you could actually make two very good paintings with the same theme by cutting this in two. Have the homeless man in one by himself, and the busy pedestrians in the other going about their lonely lives. In that case, I wouldn't crop the left at all. :D


01-27-2008, 06:32 PM
Hi again,
The phrase "All the Lonely People" comes from the Beatles' song "Eleanor Rigby"

Ms. Gee
01-27-2008, 10:37 PM
Hi Michele,

This is a wonderfully emotional painting. Everyone seems to be ignoring this poor, little sad, needy person. I don't think of them as lonely, just too distracted , but "All the Lonely People" would make me realize that they could be lonely, too.

My eyes first went to the little white thing protruding from the homeless person's face. I think I would make that disappear and, like you said, just put a suggestion of a face there, looking down. Then that person just needs a longer shadow like the others.

I really, really like the way you did the texture of the wall, the colors on the ground and the suggestion of body on the homeless person. :clap:

Definitely worth finishing! :thumbsup:

01-28-2008, 12:57 AM
Hi Michele... I would hate to see you crop this!!! The beggar seems to be the only person connecting with all the others... Indeed he's alone, but I don't feel that he's the lonely one... sad and needy for sure... The lonely people are all those walking along and trying their best to ignore him... because they don't want to share his plight, they can look neither left nor right... they chose to isolate themselves and they are so lonely in their self imposed detachment...

This painting tells a powerful story...