Sometimes a painting can be 'sort of' finished.....it sits in the corner of the studio and I walk past it for weeks, sometimes months....but there is just something about it that I can't put my finger on. Maybe its not colourful enough, maybe the composition isn't flowing, perhaps it isn't telling a story or doesn't give off the "happy" vibe I like to see in my paintings.
In August I had been commissioned to paint a big piece... an Irish Hare. I paint these creatures a lot and really enjoy it. Each one takes on its own personalities and attitude, and no two are the same. I think that's why I never get bored painting them. When I created this chap however, he appeared to have a bit of a bad attitude. He looked angry. Visitors to the studio saw him leaning against the wall, where he had been for many weeks. Some commented that they really liked him, but I just couldn't warm to him.
So.....this week.... by way of a break from the structure of Christmas commissions, I decided to revisit my angry hare. He had a base of watercolour and other than his 'bad attitude' he looked quite well, but I just wasn't feeling the love from him....not the way my other creature creations oozed contentment and interest.
So I got adventurous with some mixed media products which have just recently been purchased from Cass Art and Jacksons Art. As its Christmas I decided he needed a bit of bling and sparkle in his coat. He has had a lot of texture added by way of acrylic, gouache, ink and then finally I reached for the fine liner. There is no going back at this stage of the game.....jump in there and just have fun creating. I find that some of my most admired pieces are painted when I have absolutely no expectations and just get into the flow zone and create a piece of work from the heart.
I have attached my before and after shot. My Wildflower Hare is heading to the framers tomorrow and I am very excited about his return to the studio . He will measure in at 2 1/2 ft x 3ft once professionally framed. If he doesn't sell before Christmas I shall hang him in my house for the Christmas period. I'm glad I have turned his frown upside down. He is certainly looking as if he is in the festive spirit!
Above is grumpy hare and below is my much more relaxed and happy hare!