Tuesday, March 21, 2006

"Where is the focal point?"

I've just had a reminder that ducking the focal point issue never ever works. I created this at the weekend, working directly from life - they sat on a plate on a table right next to where I usually work. And yes, this was yet again a case of going round the supermarket doing the weekend shopping and finding a still life subject on my way round (and I've got another one in the fridge which needs to be done quickly, and then there's the flowers - I've got a queue waiting for me!)

It's a small work in coloured pencil - size 7" x 5" on Arches Hot Press paper. (I'm totally devoted to their blocks of HP paper, they're just so easy to work on - but I digress.....).

Anyway, I showed it to my best painting buddies on Sunday night - you know, the ones who'll always "tell it like it is" - no happy clappies or shirking allowed!

And back came the comment - as I should have known - from one of them.............

"I like them, but I'm having that "where is the focal point" thing going on"

And yesterday I was pondering what to do, again with the help of buddies..............
  • Can the work be rescued - can a focal point be created?
  • Would the best (and possibly quickest?) option be to mark this one down to learning and get on and do another one with a better composition?
  • How do you create a focal point in a string of scallions? (Which is where I started on Saturday!)
  • Can you have a painting which has form and pattern and no focal point - and it works?
I'm never ever averse to putting a work on one side and starting again and do it quite often. My reasoning is that so long as I get some learning out of what I've done to date that's bound to help me tackle the next one (and the one after that........).

I was sort of hoping that writing all of this down might give me the answer - I'm leaning more towards starting again but I'm still well and truly stuck on how to get a focal point into this - or do I just go for a macro form and pattern option - with no specific focal point?

So, OK - I'm now open for a bit of extra input - what do you think?

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