|'Fall Inspiration' 8x8 pastel ©Karen Margulis|
It is taking me a long time to organize my studio. But it is a thoughtful time. Thank goodness for an annual Open Studio Tour. It gives me a good reason to review the year's work and make decisions about it. Which paintings go to galleries? Which ones need to be reworked. Which ones just need to be recycled. Which ones to finally let go.
I get lost in revisiting these old friends. I uncover paintings I haven't seen in awhile. I remember what it was like at the time they were painted. I am flooded with memories and emotion.
Sometimes I uncover a painting that I haven't been ready to sell. Maybe I never offered it for sale or if I have I was secretly happy that it didn't sell. Since I paint a lot I tend not to get too emotionally attached to a painting. But every once in awhile there are some that I just want to keep around. I read recently that this means we still have lessons to be learned from these paintings.
I think it is a good practice to look at these paintings once a year....ask yourself some questions. Why do I like this painting so much? What is it that speaks to me? What did I do that was successful? How can I incorporate that into my current work? Take the time to truly soak up the painting and what it means to you. You may then find you are ready to move on and let it have a good home where it will be appreciated.
You might not know the answers. You might not be quite ready to let it go. You might never be ready and that's OK. You'll know when the time comes.
The time has come for several of my old friends including this Fall tree. What did it mean to me and what did I learn from it? It was my first successful (to me) attempt at simplification of a tree and surrounding landscape. It was my use of bigger and bolder strokes that spoke to me. I painted it last Fall but I am ready to let it go now.