Monday, July 16, 2012

Nancy Herman
oil on canvas board
9" x 12"

Today's painting is the one that had me bogged down for so long.  All the intricacies of the Cleome taught me several lessons that I should have learned by this time.  One is not to tackle such a complicated subject in such a small space.  Two, use a separate brush for each color - I am naturally rather parsimonious but the various shades of pink and purple in these petals had me constantly washing my brush and interrupted the flow.   I am off to purchase many brushes of my preferred size.  Three, mix a new batch of colors every day.  The difference between paint that is freshly mixed and a pile that sits for even one day is the difference between happy sailing in a light breeze and sitting in a row boat without an oar.
I was dimly aware of all these things for some time, but it was only after suffering through this painting that simply would not move along that I vowed to act on this awareness.  Nice to know that I am not too old to learn something, even if I am a very slow learner.
I like one of the nicknames for this flower, Grandfather's whiskers.  It could as easily be called Grandmother's whiskers I might add.  The many, many seed pods carried on its long "hairs" makes it a constant uninvited guest in all parts of the garden.