6 comments on “A hefty prod

  1. You are quite right that one small error can ruin a painting. The reverse of that is also true, especially in portrait painting (at which I would particularly like to succeed) where one tiny correction can bring the picture alive.
    I can certainly claim that there is no shortage of thinking – much of it devoted to getting the basic “drawing” right to start with.

  2. I don’t know a thing about painting or drawing. Apart from a pretty good Japanese lady in a kimono when I was in sixth grade, I’ve never produced anything worth a second look.

    Painting to me is a bit like magic – I watch people who can do anything with it and just marvel. Your apple’s an astonishment to me – to think that someone I know can do that!

    I do like your words about doing it in easy stages and keeping it simple. Truth to tell, I think that’s what I’m doing with my blog. I’ve had a person or two whisper, “you need to really write….” and I just smile and say, “But I am writing.” Somehow, it seems to me I’ll learn more by practicing on a regular basis than by trying to write the great American novel.

    Musicians practice. Do artists practice, too? I’m not being flippant – I’ve just never thought of visual artists “practicing”!

  3. Thanks Shoreacres and I can assure you that there is no magic or mystery about painting. It is a craft like any other, in which materials and techniques need to be understood and, eventually, mastered. We all started practicing as soon as we were old enough to hold a pencil and then a brush. Most of us succumbed to other priorities as we got older – or as the so-called experts convinced us that “art” was something mysterious for the privileged few and that we didn’t understand and therefore didn’t belong. I had almost nothing to do with art, even at school. In the mid-90s I started to dabble, by way of an escape from the hassles of everyday life, and managed to absorb a slight knowledge of the theory. I should practice more (same applies to my music) but I do not possess enough patience. Many painters will tell you that they have lots of rejects for every good result – but we think they are magic because we tend to see only the good results. Those rejects, together with loads of sketches and experiments with paint are all practice.
    As for your writing, have a look at your @varnishgal messages on Twitter and you will find out what I think!
    And by the way, when DID you last see snow in Texas?

  4. Hi, justwilliams,

    Interesting comments on painting – but now you have mentioned the magic word – snow! Last Friday I was just on the edge of it – no accumulation, but snow all day long, falling and falling. It was wonderful. And last year, we had snow on December 11 – enough to cover the palms and roads and throw a snowball or two.

    But the very best was the Christmas eve snow on in 2004. Here’s a link to a wonderful book about it that has a few photos in a slide show: http://www.texassnowbook.com/moresnow.html.

    Last Friday’s snow was a record-breaker – the first time Houston has had snow two years in a row.

    Oh! I just remembered I twittered about it! Dumb me. Now that I’ve signed up for twitter I ought to pay more attention to it 😉 I believe I’ll go have a look at it now.

  5. Hi Shoreacres, It was our turn today for the snow. December 21st, shortest day and all that, and a modest fall of snow in the night had been (and is still in mid-afternoon) well preserved by the sub-zero temperatures. A White Christmas? Could be. We will have to wait and see.
    By the way, your post on Salisbury and Stonehenge was simply brilliant. The Great American Novel can wait. I’ll settle for a post like that any day.

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