|'Looking for Fairies' 8x10 pastel on board ©Karen Margulis|
I abandoned this painting at least 10 years ago. I thought it was finished. I didn't know what else it needed so I stopped. I was fairly pleased with it at the time. It went into my storage box filed under Southeastern landscapes.
|Before clarifying the important areas|
But when I taped the board up at my easel I decided that I actually liked the painting even though it was an earlier work. BUT time and experience give me new insight and I could see what the painting needed to be stronger. It was a busy painting with a lot of marks and a lot going on but that didn't bother me so much. I wanted to capture the complexity of the forest interior. The painting just needed some focus and clarity. It seemed kind of busy and fuzzy all over.
|Follow the arrows to see where I added clarity|
All I needed to do was to create a visual pathway through the busy forest. I needed to give my viewers some way to read the painting. I needed to show them around the forest. I needed to add clarity to the places where I wanted the eye to go. This was completed by using contrast. I used contrast of color intensity, contrast of value , contrast of edges. Look at the painting in the photo above. Can you find those areas near the arrows where I made changes to the original painting? You can scroll up to see the original.
TRY THIS: Take out an OLDER painting that you abandoned. (thought you were finished) Can you see a visual pathway? Are there areas that you can clarify? Are there areas that could be simplified? See how much you have grown as an artist!