Friday, September 2, 2011

"Tulips and Pansies" (acrylic on canvas; 12" x 10") sold


"Tulips and Pansies" used to be a much larger painting (20 x 16"); it also used to be called something else ("Lovers in Spring Garden").  The scene is from the Market Square in Old Town, Alexandria in Virginia.  In the background one could see cars, buildings, lampposts and passersby. There was also a couple of lovers in a passionate embrace!  It was too much and I found the painting an embarrassment.  It was about to be donated.

Then I looked at it with an objective eye and spotted a nice spring flower bed in the left bottom.  Humm....  Why not crop the painting judiciously, paint over the offending, busy area in the background, and change the bottom right corner into dirt.  Thus was born "Tulips and Pansies".  I am not saying it's a great painting.  It's full of hard edges, for one thing.  But that's how I used to paint several years ago, as I found blending in the fast-drying medium of acrylic very hard.  You know artists grow and evolve and their early works have their own merit. 

Do I sound defensive?  I am not actually.  Have you seen Vincent Van Gogh's earlier drawings, or even his mature paintings?  I am positive that he was still developing when his life was tragically cut short by his foolhardy, if altruistic, suicide.  (He committed suicide to help out his long-suffering brother, Theo, as he suspected that his paintings might start selling with the notoriety of his early death.  He botched his suicide attempt and died of slow, painful death.  Poor guy!)  Obviously, I am not comparing myself with Van Gogh, one of my heroes.  It's just that I am glad that I gave my old painting another chance.

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