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.

4 comments:

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!
Brilliant.
Y'know, if life did have clear-cut endings, it might be boring.

David M. Kessler said...

Hazel,

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.