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Tuesday, May 19, 2020

The Importance of Being There

'Poppies from the Heart''                  9x12               pastel                 ©Karen Margulis
available $175

Did you ever paint something that you just couldn't get right? I was so excited to paint from the beautiful garden photo my friend sent me. It was a garden filled with poppies. I imagined how I would paint them . I even had a title for the painting. I would call it Garden Party. But it turned out to be a party pooper. It was probably the busiest painting I ever did! I had fun creating the profusion of flowers but it was just too much.

The more I added the worse it got. I kept thinking if I added more it would improve. It didn't.  I became frustrated. I walked away from the easel. Today with fresh eyes I saw that the only choice was to wipe it off and start over.  But I realized something very important. 

While I loved the photo my friend sent me I wasn't invested in it. I was not there when she took the photo. I didn't experience the garden with all of my senses. I couldn't interpret it with my heart and soul because it was just a pretty photo that someone else experienced.  

I still wanted to paint poppies but I had to paint poppies I knew. I pulled out a photo of a poppy field I saw in France. My heart began being faster. I felt the connection. I remembered the day I took the photos and the emotions rushed in. I painted and this time it was from my heart.

The first version was a wiper

My new reference. I wiped out the painting and used alcohol to do a wash. I also applied some Diane Townsend dry ground to add back some tooth. 

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