Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The "Nothing New Under the Sun" Problem

After too much angst I finally decided on the subject for my next painting - two fawns in a woodland clearing.  But there's a problem.  Specifically, the "nothing new under the sun" problem.

This subject has been done, done some more, and probably over-done.  So how can I make it "fresh?"  Or is that even possible?  I suppose I'm more aware of this issue than I would ordinarily be because I'm painting pieces for my next - and hopefully finally successful - application to the Society of Animal Artists.  Each piece must be the best I can do and the best I can do shouldn't include cliches.

So I have had real doubts about this subject.  My hope is that once I emotionally connect with these little guys the connection will come through and make the painting special.  The trouble is that with most other subjects I've felt connected before I started painting.

What to do?  What can I do but plunge ahead? 

By the way, I've used my Faber-Castell Polychromos pastels in this first stage and I really like them.  They're hard, like NuPastel, but there are more colors and once I break through the varnish skin on them they lay down the pigment beautifully.

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