Wednesday, December 23, 2009

End Of The Line

It always surprises me when other artists ask me: How do you know when a painting is finished?
I've always known it exactly. My works in enamel are so carefully planned in the study phase that when it comes to the painting itself, there is a logical and quite precise structure to the line-work and application of coats.
The discipline and analysis this requires flows into my looser, more improvisatory ink drawings and watercolours. In these, I allow my thoughts to stray and form random attachments which, in turn, inspire anarchic reactions in my pen or brush-work. And yet I rarely lose track of the picture's essential 'narrative' which manages always to suggest – to me, anyway – a clear-cut beginning and end.
If only it was as easy in my life outside of art.


Susan Adsett said...

That question has always astonished me, too. How can you NOT know when a painting is finished? It's like knowing when to stop talking.

Oh, right. Some people aren't so good at that, either...

If I'm ever looking at something I'm working on, and I can't figure out if it's finished or not, it's a good indication that I've lost the plot and need to re-think the entire piece. So my stuff falls into the categories "finished" and "didn't work". It's not hard for me to tell the difference between the two.

Lorna said...

Have a good holiday!

faunawolf said...

Oh Susan! Your comment made me laugh!
Y'know, if life did have clear-cut endings, it might be boring.

David M. Kessler said...


I have just begun to follow your blog this year and I am a big fan of the content. All of us as artists struggle andn you have the courage to share your struggles with everyone in a very public format. Thank you for baring your soul so that others may benefit from it.

May you have continued success in your career in 2010. I will be following your success along with your other fans.

Thank you.