Tuesday, February 04, 2014

too much or too little?

I thought this needed more branches, but when I added them it just looked messy and confusing to me. Luckily, it wasn't too late to wash them out. But I still think it needs something ... maybe some lighter, cooler, softer-edged beach plums in the background.
I thought adding the beach plum behind the bird would add some balance, but I feel it hasn't really worked. Maybe adding on couldn't hurt, since I'm not pleased now ... and maybe I'll learn something.

Years ago I painted with a group that met in Carolyn Howard, retired teacher and painter's, basement. She was a great critiquer and kept a pile of colored paper on hand; she would tear off a piece and hold it up against your painting to help you see ... Some discs of orange paper might help me decide.


Mary Sheehan Winn said...

It's a beautiful start and I'm okay with the branches. You could fade them out as you draw them, even draw them lightly with a micron pen if you like that feature.
Maybe put some tracing paper over it and experiment.
Just think it through, it's really beautiful.

Cathy Gatland said...

I love the orange with the white, and the clean little bird. I might try a deeper orange shape behind the bird's head..? (I too had a great teacher who got us to hold coloured paper bits to try things out)

Polly Birchall said...

They say less is more, it's knowing when to stop. These are lovely and losely painted. So don't fiddle too much. I use a sheet of acetone and draw with oil bars, then move it over the top of the painting, sometimes helps.

Celia Blanco said...

That is a good idea or doing rough thumbnail sketches helps me. I like the mix of orange with gray and the repetitive shapes don't bother me.I look forward to seeing how you work it out Laura!

RH Carpenter said...

I'm loving the colors (had to look up what a beach plum was as I'd never heard of that), but I think the composition is such that we move from the bird to the plums to the bird - back and forth without resting anywhere. I think a few paler hints of the plums in the background might help. Cut circles out of that similar color and place them around to see where they might best be placed? This is not finished and will be a challenge to finish but it can be done :) I have faith in you!