"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Perfectionism

I didn't know it until I was older, but I am a perfectionist.  Early on, I thought perhaps it was a good quality to have.  

Wrong.

Perfection is unattainable. Nothing is ever as I wish it was; it's never good enough.  The pie might have had a more symmetrical lattice crust on top and on and on and on...

Being a very curious person, (I believe I told you I used to read encyclopedias for fun), I have leaped into everything that interested me, headfirst, without fear or abandon (every mother's nightmare wild child).
It is how I learned.

This could go on and be too lengthy, so I'll cut to the chase.

On my creative side, my oil painting has always been a thorn in my side.  Never have been satisfied with my work.  I have always used the old master's glaze technique for it was what interested me (and was the only one I knew how to do). 
Just like a carpenter's tools or a surgeon's instruments, an artist's brushes too have specific uses.  You must know which brush to use.

Over the years I have come to love modern/abstract art.  Picasso is a personal favorite and a more recent artist, George Condo.  My list is long.

I've always wanted to do some modern paintings, but didn't know how.  I bought handfuls of palette knives and don't have a clue as to the use of each one, and it will be a steep learning curve. 

So, I went and bought the largest tubes of oil paint I could find, a regular sized canvas and went to town on it.  I had a ball.  I learned something too.  You need a good underpainting/drawing to start with.  Oh, I do love shortcuts, but, well, you know... another lesson.

I'll show you a tiny bit of the painting - a heavy impasto and just trying to get total canvas coverage like with the old technique.  It has been a lot of fun and I'll keep trying.  My goal is to do some very large canvases.  I told you. Dive right in there head first.


Did you notice the hand model?  It will be holding the title of the painting.

  

28 comments:

  1. Donna..it's fantastic!
    My friend Nancy that moved away..always painted on xtra large canvases.. I always wondered how she carried them from the store to her car..I have one of hers here.. she lived in France for many years and took photos of the older French women that lived nearby..while living here she painted a few of these women..her style.I love it..
    That's fantastic Donna!

    Love that room with the windows..stained glass and art..:)

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    1. I said fantastic twice..I meant it:)

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    2. Thank you so Monique. I wish you'd send me a pic of her painting. I too have looked at those large canvases and wondered how I'd get it home. And how would you ever be able to sell it and pack it up? I guess a lot of artists build their own canvases, but I wouldn't have a clue how to do it. And, I thought of you when I wrote this post. You are perfect.

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    3. I will ! Where is your email link Donna?

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    4. Monique, darned if I know. I thought it was somewhere on this blog, but it is lostonthefarm05@yahoo.com.

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  2. Interesting read. I employed a similar technique in my approach to modern machine embroidery and did feel I improved.

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    1. Weaver, I am impressed. Give me a machine and an instruction booklet and I can guaranty I'd run away screaming. The mechanical part of my brain is missing.

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  3. DAYUM, Donna! I Swannee---you DO beat all.

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    1. You too, Rachel. I know you like pink.

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  4. I do think you know what you're doing--art! Years ago when my sister was 18 and lived with me she "wanted to paint!" We went to the supply store, bought big canvasses, brushes, acrylic paint. Her boyfriend threw in an expensive easel. Canvas after canvas went into the trash.
    My girlfriend had to be out of town when she needed to be in line registering for a nurse's class. I stood in line to register for her, and as I shuffled along I realized I could go back to the end of the line and go through again and register my sister for an art 101 class. It changed her life. She has gone through several mediums, but it all starts with knowing which pencil, which brush, which technique, how to draw and egg and some distance perspective and then going for it.
    Well, that's my take on it. Actually, I'm an accountant, and I love your Ms. Sunshine there.

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    1. What an incredible thing to do for your sister. Wish you were my sister Joanne. If I could just find a way to make a living at it. Done the wholesale thing and it just galls me. Then I tried the show thing and the overhead is about as bad as the wholesaler's take. Plus, I'm an introvert, so not comfortable with the small talk - need to be able to schmooz at the shows.

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  5. Donna I just love that painting - big and bold - I love the technique. You are very talented. I love the look of your room too.

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  6. Thank you Elaine. It means a lot to me. I didn't pan over to my dining room table. The mess would have scared you.

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  7. You cannot be anything other than modern for the next few years Donna. Show us a full frontal of that heavy impasto painting, and keep the interiors shots separate?

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    1. Tom, you show me yours and I'll show you mine - when I finish it. It is my first one and I'm timid; usually don't ever show my artwork to anyone until it's finished. A quirk of mine.

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    1. Oh Ry, thank you so much. Did you move? I miss you posting.

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  9. This big and bold style is beyond me,but you seem able to pull it off.I,too, am a perfectionist so nothing I do is ever good enough.That is a fabulous room, such great light.I would be curious to see the hanging art sometime.

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    1. Only place in the house with enough light to work. All the pictures on the wall? Old rock and roll posters from the sixties that I had framed. My husband had them in a closet all those years unframed. Many of them are famous ones.

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  10. So now.....I see nothing wrong with that painting so far. I think the hair is just beautiful. Did you have fun doing it? Well, maybe not fun on the first one, but I still think it is a beautiful start. The color combinations are lovely.

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    1. Thank you so much. I am trying for an older woman, but not sure how I will make her look so without turkey neck and wrinkles and jowls. just have to mess with it some more. I am wondering how long this thing will take to dry. I think quite a long time.

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  11. YOU OIL PAINT? Good gracious, you are multi-talented, but I guess we are all filled with abilities that we are constantly discovering all the time. Perfectionism? I HEAR YA. I have finally learned to let go to a certain degree. Do it till I get it right, not perfect...just enough to get the job done and not hurt anyone in my wake (my job!!!!) and as for my artistic endeavors, the perfectionism is part of the wonky reality. I learned just recently from a master gardener after having posed the question about how to treat pests on roses. She said, "Learn to live with the imperfections" since she was trying to tell me to avoid pesticides. Point taken, and the lesson expands to other areas of my life.

    Oh Donna, YOU HAVE A WHITE HORSE?????? GRACIE? Sweet Penny White made this horse for me for my birthday (in April) and she worked on him until he was just right. Thank you for visiting Nowhere....it's a place where my husband and I, Penny and the Dutchess love to play and laugh, create and just be ourselves. Come by any time! Give Gracie a hug for me, Anita

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    1. Dear Anita, you are perfect just as you are and it is always a treat to see you post, even if it is a rarity these days. Hey, you are having fun and Carmel? Well, what could be better than that.

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  12. adore it, and at first glimpse I thought vanessa bell-always influenced by picasso. in fact I thought it might be a view at Charleston. Love the look of your room beyond. pgt

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    1. It's all coming from out of my head, Gaye. It has been fun and I'm going to keep going with it and do some larger canvases. Thank you for your kind words, coming from a famous interior designer/decorator like you. Can't wait for your new book.

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  13. Your painting is wonderful Donna …. you are so talented.
    …. and, I LOVE your home….. such high ceilings, beautiful windows and your 60's posters are brilliant. XXXX

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    1. Thank you so Jacqueline. I do so appreciate it as I am unsure as to this new technique. It means a lot. Yes, the hubby and I are the original hippies and the psychedelic rock posters are reminders. That, and the name of this painting is.............Lipstick On Her Reefer from an old Laura Nyro song called Blackpatch.

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