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Friday, October 06, 2017

When You Can't Stop Painting One Thing

'Pink Poppy Profusion II'          6x8           pastel on Uart Dark        ©Karen Margulis
available $125
I can't help myself. Sometimes I find something that I just can't stop painting. It may be a subject or a particular reference photo that grabs my attention. It may even be the first painting done from the photo that inspires more interpretation. No matter what the reason I can't stop painting!

Some artists prefer to paint new material and don't like to repeat a motif but I find repetition allows me to truly understand and become intimate with my subject. If Degas did it then it is a good practice for me too!

Just as a classical dancer repeats the same movements again and again, in order to achieve a greater perfection of line and balance, so Degas repeats the same motifs - it was one of the things that gave him so much sympathy with dancers. -Sir Kenneth Clark


My pastels used for the pink poppy series
Here are some tips for repetition of a motif

  • Choose a subject or photo that you LOVE. It should be something that you experienced. The passion for the subject is necessary!
  • Challenge yourself to interpret the scene in different ways instead of just copying the same painting over and over.
  • Keep things simple. In the early receptions I like to reuse the same pastel palette. It eliminates one thing from the planning and allows you to concentrate on composition and marks.

You are invited to check out my Patreon page for more painting tips and inspiration.

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