Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Overworked, defined

After posting, I realized that I was taking the word "overworked" for granted.  Of my handful of readers, there is an even split of artists and non, so I was forgetting that the non-artists may be lost.  This blog gets distributed to Facebook, where "overworked" has a much more conventional meaning, the "I'm trapped at the office-overworked" sort of meaning that I genuinely feel for. So,  I need to clarify:  I'm not overworked, the painting is. 

Sometimes a painting goes too far:  what was once easy becomes effort, then chore. As a result, the image loses some of the life the artist wishes to convey. When this happens, the picture is overworked.  I tend to overwork things, pride myself on the effort, the struggle to bring them back to life.  The picture may never regain it's vitality, it's youthful exuberance,  but it may gain something of a hard-won maturity-- adulthood, grit.   However, sometimes the effort fails, it's a loss, a wash.   The torture of the digital age is having a record of the past steps. or what was.   In Photoshop, you can click undo.  The game of oil painting is a constant wager of risking safe solutions for somethings perhaps better.   Of course, this can be addictive.  Somethings stages may be better left alone. 

No comments: