Monday, November 3, 2008
Something about Bard's painting has been nagging at me, and I've been reluctant to continue with it until figuring out just what. I knew his head was not quite right but couldn't put my finger on just where it was wrong until I printed out some of the reference photos last weekend. In studying them for what must have been the 24th time, I noticed for the first time that he has a dip and then a convex curve to his nasal bone. "That's it!" I shouted to myself. It was a Eureka! moment. In comparing the painting to those photos, the difference was at last visible.
The other thing that's been bothering me is a nagging feeling that the color in the photos wasn't accurate, so on Thursday I took my prints to the barn and compared them to the real Bard. Yup, they are way too red. Bard is more of a dun color without dun factors, which means that his coat is more brassy and gold than red and orange. Boy, was I glad then that I hadn't continued with the painting, because it would have meant painting him all over again!
Of course I should have planned ahead, printed out those photos sooner and taken them to the barn months ago. But I didn't for a variety of reasons that we need not reveal here. It's best not to go there. Now that I have things figured out, I'm eager to get to painting again, but the next few weeks are really chopped up with appointments, meetings and a trip to Ann Arbor. I've resigned myself to the idea that I'm just going to have to paint in little bits of time whenever I can fit it in and not worry about paint drying too fast or any of that. Bard has been on the back burner far too long as it is. He needs to be finished and out the door so that I can get back to other artwork and finally have some new finished works to put up for sale.
Speaking of which, sales this year have been particularly dismal what with the economy problems and all. It's been quite a long time since I took any prints or note cards up to the gallery in Central Lake which was pretty much out of all of my work, so yesterday I gathered some prints and note cards and then did something I haven't done for several years. Back when I was doing booth shows, I hand colored some of my early black and white prints, and they sold really well. It occured to me that now might be a good time to try that again. Above you can see the results of a hand colored version of my print, "Gotta Scratch". It took me about an hour to layer on the colors with colored pencils while watching TV, and I plan to do many more of these for holiday sales for the gallery and for my website.
In the past I hand colored another older print which also sold well. When I get one done, I'll show that one to you, too. We artists are doing anything we can think of to offer something new yet inexpensive to our collectors in these dismal economic times when everyone is cutting back and waiting to see what the future brings. This is definitely something I can do until I have new paintings to offer. The hand colored prints will be offered at a slightly higher price and offer something that is one of a kind for a very attractive price.
Hopefully, it's a win-win for artist and collector and a good plan for the days ahead.