|'New England Morning' 16x20 pastel ©Karen Margulis Purchase Here $225|
"Overly busy works tire the eye, induce boredom and make it difficult to find a center of interest or focus. Less is often more. "Take something out" said the American painter and illustrator Harvey Dunn"So I interpret this to mean LESS STUFF EVERYWHERE = A MORE INTERESTING PAINTING
It is our challenge to find the balance between putting in enough information and clarity in our area of interest and making sure we have some areas of rest and mystery so out viewers can participate in our paintings. Here are some ideas:
- Have a plan before you start painting...know where your area of interest will be so you have a general direction.
- Work with pastel chunks rather than hard sticks or pastel pencils. You are less likely to get too fussy with bigger pieces. (same as the idea of using bigger brushes)
- Try working on rougher surface especially homemade textured surfaces. The texture forces you to paint loosely and less detailed.
- Start with a wet or loose underpainting. If everything begins mysterious and out of focus it is easier to decide where to put in the clarity.
- Try doing a painting more quickly than your usual pace. Often we are done sooner than we think and we just end up fiddling and adding too much stuff.
- Set a timer for 30 minutes and take a break. Come back to the painting with fresh eyes.
- Use a frame or mat to eliminate the surroundings...this allows you to concentrate on the painting and evaluate it. It is often closer to being finished than you might think!