Saturday, July 28, 2012

Petal Light #1 (Another One Done...)

Lately I was doing an inventory check of unfinished paintings, and realized that the majority of them went into a halt right before the final stage of large-area wet-in-wet applications. In fact, there are a few that I have started this final stage of attacks, however, after each passage there is always a long idle period, more time spent staring at the paper surface than for actual application. It almost seems like I am subconsciously afraid to proceed, worrying about ruining the perfect image that has formed in my head at this stage...

There is no better way to fight fear than just forge ahead. So I spent better time of today finishing Petal Light #1, which should really long been finished. It turns out, the final applications are not nearly as scary as I have imagined them to be in my subconscious for so long. Is this a perfect finish? Probably not. But it is what I could give my best and achieve right now, and one more step in the direction of chasing the illusive "perfect master piece". If I keep on practicing, it will come -- I tell myself, yet again. The journey is the only thing that is more important than the destination...

Petal Light #1, Watercolor on Arches 140# Cold Press Paper, 10"h x 8"w, 2012 #40


  1. An absolutely stunning bird of paradise, deep and oh so rich greens. Oh to paint one eighth as well!

  2. It looks wonderful to me...loads of juicy color and lovely shadows which really make those colors sing. I'd love to try my hand at watercolors...kinda scary,! Have a great day, Arena, and thanks for sharing! :o)

  3. Your talk of struggling with feelings of fear before proceeding is SO TRUE!! I have fallen victim to that so many, many times. And I really think that working smaller (which does get rid of the need for huge washes which can be frightening) really helps get past that fear. If you just get in the habit of painting and not letting yourself get sucked into the fear you can accomplish so much. Like you proved. The painting is so beautiful Arena. Well done!

  4. Dear Arena,This work, which you tell the difficulties is now in my eyes a true masterpiece!
    Your journey has already met several beautiful destinations!

    (As watercolorist,I recognize myself a lot in your words and your questions!
    My demon is the overworking or leave in the middle, not knowing the language when I back to the composition,after stop the work for any cause.
    I think I found a solution in a deeper study of the tones, the tone scale is like the backbone of the painting, but I love the color and I never really want to prepare studies monochromes.
    Tired of ruining the material ... I'm trying this method, meticulous, working on my photographs.
    The roses that you have appreciated are the result of this study
    which occurs separately from watercolor.
    The journey is more important than the destination ... so armed with patience and monochrome I go on!)
    A Big Hug,Rita!

  5. Hello Arena:) As you see, we all regonize these feelings, me too!
    I think it belongs to painting. It ensures that to paint remains a challenge. If everything without thinking, would succeed, the fun will be gone soon.
    Occasionally it's nice do a ' simple ' painting, but after that I need the challenge. The small problems that you described are a part of painting.
    Your painting is wonderful. Hence the ruling: the finishing touch:)

  6. Great post -- I know EXACTLY what you are talking about. This painting looks beautiful as all the rest! :) Keep forging ahead! You're awesome.

  7. Hi Arena, I can certainly understand that fear factor. I think sometimes our starts can be so wonderful, we fear doing what we need to finish, because we may ruin our vision. However, whatever you are doing, its working. Your paintings are so gorgeous, the leaves in this one are a wonderful mix of warm and cool, a perfect support for the bird.

  8. It looks great, Arena! I know exactly the feeling you are talking about. I am just starting to feel more confident about going over a large area with a wash - even with a portrait. And I am finding ... it WORKS!

  9. Seems like all of us experience this anxiety. I do, especially after having spent many hours developing a piece and waiting to put in a dark background until the very end. I come to a point that I just have to go for it, even though my hand is shaking!

    Arena, I hope you were able to get your entry into SCWS.


Thank you so much for taking time visiting and commenting on my blog! Your feedback and encouragements are things that keep me going with I am feeling down or frustrated... I will try my best to reply to every comment ASAP but sometimes life gets in the way and I am a bit slow in my response. I would like to apologize if that happens...

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