Sunday, March 09, 2008

Daffodil Disaster



Watercolour and Oil Pastel

I brought a beautiful bunch of daffodils back from Jean's farm last week, full of anticipation about painting them. Meantime I tried to progress the Botticelli oil portrait I've been working on for weeks. I think I'm in a bit of an End Of Winter Slump where nothing much is going right. Anyway, the day before yesterday I finally sketched my daffodils, then life got in the way again and by the time I got back to them this morning, they were well and truly dead. I made a halfhearted attempt to finish the watercolour but it was a disaster. Tried to rescue it by adding some bold oil pastels. Unfortunately 'the patient' died.

Why am I posting this? I'm hoping I will be motivated to move on and do something else so it doesn't have to sit on my blog too long. Anyone else having an EOWS?



Daffodils blooming under apricot trees at the farm.

24 comments:

Joan Sandford-Cook said...

How can you possibly call this a disaster. I bet nearly all good contemporary works were arrived at following some unexpected problem. I LOVE IT.

mARTa said...

I don't know if I'd call it a disaster. You have a good composition going here. I especially am attracted to the strong diagonal of the stems. The contrast between the harsh outline of the blossoms against the softness of them, well, bothers me to the point of provoking me. Isn't that what great ART (aka disaster in this case) does? When you can stimulate the viewer (me) you are certainly working on a level of proficiency in your craft. I admire your sluggishness! I would live with this piece and look at it at another time with a different eye. This really pulsates and you can really go with it!

Robyn said...

Joan - Your kind and oh so generous comment has me daffy with delight! You have just given me a great deal of encouragement to take more risks. As you know, I could have scrubbed away and overworked this picture until I achieved something that looked a bit more like the real thing. What I really wanted though, was to do something more painterly. So thank you :)

Robyn said...

Marta - Bless you!!!!

Sydney said...

It may feel like a disaster to you but I like it! There is something about the combination of bold outlines, lost edges, and colors that intrigues me. I spotted this on the EDM Superblog and just had to comment.

juj said...

Your midwinter slump must be affecting your brain! I love this piece and the creative steps you took to make it work. Great composition, bold strokes, dynamic tension between the realism and the abstract...

Ok, now that's said I will acknowledge that it still sucks when something doesn't come out the way we intended, and no matter whether it works or not, if it doesn't match that picture in our head it feels like a "disaster". I completely understand and I wish I could give you a big hug. You're not alone - it seems to be the season (or rather, hopefully, the end of the season) for that. Better days are comin' - hand in there.

Quilt Knit said...

I have EOWS! It is March, my BD month and not a flower to see on the ground. Way too cold. At home< I would be sitting in Daffodils and watching the last of the Crocus. Wonderful piece. Well done.
Sherrie

Robyn said...

Judi, you make my heart sing. I don't think I ever achieved dynamic tension before. :)

Thank you too, Sherrie.

Robyn said...

Sydney - I thought you must have been an Australian with your name. Thank you so much and I enjoyed discovering your blog.

laureline said...

Your brain is rather easily affected, isn't it ;D. I thought this was a kind of visual sampler, showcasing the fantastic painting techniques you're a master of! Those lost and found edges! That deft handling of light and color, mass and volume! The sparkling spatters! The perfectly rooted composition!
Shush that silly overcritical voice in your head, young lady!

caseytoussaint said...

I think it's very edgy - you should be proud of it!

caseytoussaint said...

Oh, and yes - I've got a bad case of EOWS!

africantapestry said...

I, for one, am made up of EOUWS, so much so that I don't even apologize for them any more! Great work you've been doing, including this last one, which has a nice abstractism to it. And then I also love your pen and wash posts a while ago and of course the very Robyn style tulips which are just beautiful!
So good to visit here again...
Ronell

Joan said...

I think you waited a bit too long to get what you really wanted. Flowers don't cooperate that way. Nice composition anyway!

I beat the EOWS by taking a weeklong watercolor workshop down in South Carolina where it felt like spring. In addition to the wonderful workshop, we were able to walk on the beach and I put my feet into the still very cold water. The trip definitely rejuvinated me because the workshop gave me so many things I want to try at home.

Hope your EOWS passes quickly!

Robyn said...

Laura, Casey & Ronell - After such sweet comments I'm almost ready to forgive you all for the time you are about to spend together in La Belle France!

It's amazing what a little encouragement will do! I'm now thinking there could be a whole series based on this cut-out approach. The picture is starting to remind me of those lovely embossed scrapbook stickers I had as a child.

Dave said...

I'd call it a happy accident rather than a disaster! I hope your end of winter slump soon transforms itself into a start of spring boost.

Jeanette said...

Sometimes what we initially feel about a drawing or painting reverses itself and becomes a unique treasured piece. This is one of those I believe.

I envy you your daffodils no matter how you see them. Here it is -12 this morning. Daffodils will be awhile coming up yet...

Dermott said...

I'm with the artist. Disaster. Complete unmitigated disaster.

This should be taken in the context in which it was offered - contructively.

Robyn said...

Jeanette - Minus 12! I will stop moaning immediately. It's not a great day here today but something magical has happened. Overnight it seems, there is blossom everywhere and I saw a tree full of magnolias - just gorgeous.

Thank you and everyone else who has made me feel a little pleased with this 'disaster'.

Dermott - What can I say? We should never have let you read Simon Schama.

Mim said...

i love these daffs...and yes, we all have the EOWS

janie said...

I think this was a brilliant 'save', it might not be what you set out to do but it is bold and beautiful.
The EOWS, it's hard isn't it.

tania said...

Maybe that's what I'm suffering from? "End of Winter Slump"? Hmmm... Well, it certainly sounds less dangerous than the "artistic crisis" I thought I was suffering from!!

Robyn said...

Mim, Janie - Thank you. Thank you for your kind words and it is a comfort to know this is a widespread seasonal problem.

Tania - Trust me, when regular sunshine returns 'artistic crisis' will evaporate. ;)

isabel said...

I like it. I think it's interesting. And a brave use of mixed media. We all have EOWS? Yes!!

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