Did I Go Too Far?

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This fern painting was entertaining & amusing. I started by applying a colorful wash on the paper allowing the pigment to run & mix, letting watercolor do what it’s capable of and what it does best. It’s like working with a living medium that moves & flows while creating intense blooms & mixtures of new & exciting colors.

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In this first photo you can start to see the small green shapes I painted which are the spaces between the leaves along the center spine. These will make more sense as the painting progresses.

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The beginning-step 1

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Now I used the green pigment to paint the exterior shape outside the leaf which allows the leaf to become visible. The paper must be completely dry before I can move on to the next step.

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Step 2

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 I start painting the perimeter of the leaf which will be behind the lightest leaf. The small teardrop shapes create the spots where the spine of the leaf is located. This is similar to the light green shapes in the first step.

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Step 3

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As I continue painting outside the leaves the many layers of overlapping leaves take form. It is very important to NOT paint over any existing  leaf shapes while painting around new leaves.

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Step 4

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My painting is almost finished and I plan on adding the final touch. I have been enjoying ending my paintings by letting loose with splatter and dark dripping pigment.

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Finished Painting Before Drips & Splatter

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When the painting is complete & dry I step back and take a good look at the conclusion of my work.

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Finished Painting with Drips & Splatter

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Now I have a dilemma, I think I like the painting BEFORE I dripped paint all over it. I don’t hate the final painting, I just feel that the beauty of the overlapping leaves along with the soft flowing shapes have disappeared behind the drips.

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What do you think?

Do you prefer the painting with or without the final splatter?

Did I go too far, should I have stopped before I added the drips?

The nice thing is that I can do this painting again and get different results by omitting the final drips.

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I don’t feel bad because I’m not happy with this painting. Each time I set out to create a piece of art I’m never quite sure of the final results. Each painting takes me closer to being a better painter.

Painting makes me feel good, if it didn’t I would have never gone this far as an artist. It’s all about the journey not the final destination. Have a good time on your trip, smile a lot, share your art with friends and know that you are creating beauty one painting at a time.

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Paint with Me

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~ by Lorraine Rimmelin on July 24, 2011.

5 Responses to “Did I Go Too Far?”

  1. I happen to prefer the pre-splatter painting, but I also like parts of the splattered version… maybe you can also experiment with the amount of drips and splatters to find a level that works for you. I appreciate that you look at your “failures” as a learning tool that help you find the painting you love most.

  2. I’m not much of a critic, but I do prefer the pre-splatter painting. The overlapping leaves in the painting were so beutiful. I don’t see the final painting as a failure but I do see it as a learning experience and we all learn something new every day.

  3. Just wanted to say, I do enjoy looking at the paintings from the begining to the end.

  4. Thanks Jenn, I also see small pieces of the splattered painting that are cool.

  5. Thanks for your comments Olivera. It was a hard decision to accept the fact that I wasn’t pleased with a painting I spent so much time & energy on but knowing I could do this again and enjoy the painting process is a welcomed idea. It was exactly what you said about the overlapping leaves that I felt were lost in the final painting.
    I’m glad you enjoy seeing the process of how I do a painting 🙂

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