The next step

I have worked from the live nude periodically since the early 1970's. This blog started in my second year of working almost exclusively from the figure.

In the fall of 2015 I reintroduced still lifes and an occasional cityscape into my painting repertoire. Rather than abandon this figure blog or start a new one I decided to add them to the conservation.

All drawings and paintings posted on this blog were done entirely from live models or on location.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Success

I once read of a painting teacher telling his students "Never try to repeat a success". Say what? In what other facet of life would you even entertain such a suggestion? In virtually all endeavors common sense tells us to repeat our successes. However, when I first read this advice I knew exactly what the teacher meant. Repetition can be deadly in ones art. Searching for a path to success is the goal but you stop growing by simply replicating a successful formula .

Staying on topic there are a several of my early nudes and four self portraits reflected in the still life below.

Still Life, oil on linen, 19" X  23", 2006

I am not capable of endlessly repeating paintings I find "successful". I get bored when not experimenting. I have a loose "rule of three". If I hit on a subject that I enjoy exploring and produce an image that "works" I'll try a couple more.  One to see if the first was merely an accident and another to confirm my conclusion. The still life above was the third, and my favorite, of four paintings that prominently featured reflective surfaces.

Over the years I have broken this rule many times notably with peaches and magnolia blossoms.  Due to a high level of difficulty and complexity I think the figure demands a new rule. Perhaps a rule of 300.

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