Monday, July 19, 2010

my final critique

9x12 pastel and watercolor on Uart
I must admit this workshop has been wonderful, but at the same time a total drain on the brain. Workshops are challenging. First you have to realize that if you are really to learn you have to produce some real crud. Second, you have to realize that in order to learn you will constantly be in analyze mode...a very hard place for me. I am not really an analytical painter, although I realize that in order to reach another plane I have to analyze more...not constantly, but just to check up on the painting. I am not trying to change my painting style, only improve and learn. And boy I have a lot of that to do!!!!

My critique was hard to swallow as I could already see all I had done wrong and had self diagnosed some of it. To expose myself even more, this is what I heard from Richard:
1. I need to make certain I do not fragment  my stroke as much. This is what I had already seen. In order to work bigger I need to work with bigger pastels- not the small pieces(shards) I tend to work with. I had already bought a selection of 98 Girault pastels and I am using bigger pieces.
2. I need to be more attentive to chroma. I am guilty of too much. Yes, I am a person who can easily go that route...when I really like something I am a bit obsessive- read ..... constant trips to one place, or eating 7 chocolates instead of just one.
3. While we are on the topic of obsessive, Richard said I need to give my muse a break once and a while. Paint something that doesn't excite me as an exercise in strengthening my knowledge of theory and technique.
4.The focal point needs to be stronger- less equality in the painting.

So the painting above was done early this morning. I tried to process all this information and then let it sit in the back of my head and just enjoy painting. This is the same view I did last week, Wednesday.  I am struggling to find my way. I think I need to breathe.... and then think.


Double "D" said...

Dear B,

Now that you're on over load from the workshop, I think you are exactly right ... take a deep breath and drift away from this experience, rest and sleep and for pete sakes ... no obsessive compulsive ... stay away from those pastels for an hour or two or even days.
Don't worry about losing the information ... knowing you it's there forever. When you go back to it, digest it in a slower pace to better understand and evaluate what you're doing. Also, don't be so sure that you have to do things this way ... I think everyone felt your work was beautiful and meaningful before the workshop. You already have enough information in that noggin of yours to pave the state of Maryland.

I like that first and last version of this. In some ways I like the first version better.

Are you headed home now or do you still have more time in Washington. Hey, paint a mountain if you can see one.

Until later,

Julie Broom said...

HI Loriann, it sounds like you have got a lot out of the workshops, even if it has been rather intense at times. I totally agree that a break from analytical mode is the way to go after an experience like this. Rest assured that your subconscious will carry on processing and making sense of all the new information while you give your conscious mind a well deserved break. ;-)

loriann said...

You are sooooooo funny PB! Thanks for the calming moment. I will rebound...even stronger. I guess I am just an obsessive kind of person. More the way, how is your health?

Hi Julie! Thanks for you reassuring words!!!!!

Donna T said...

Wow Loriann, that's a lot to take in and process. Brain drain big time. Thanks for sharing your critique with us; it's really helpful to see how someone like Richard can help you to see your work objectively, although I'm not so sure about the give-the-muse-a-break thing. I just can't picture you out painting cars and pickup trucks! Good to have you back in MD!

B Boylan said...

Lorianne, thanks for sharing your intimate pain and joy on the easel with us out in cyberland. It's humbling to hear what to fix in our work because painting is such a personal experience! I'll be in a Handell workshop this August and will probably get turned inside out! Regardless, it's all for an ultimate goal, huh?

Paint on girlfriend, and hoping you enjoyed the Great Northwest! Maybe next year we will rendevous at a LaConnor workshop?

SamArtDog said...

For what it's worth, I also think A) you need a break, and B) you shouldn't be anything else but what you are. You know your recipes?... well, go ahead and add your experience as another ingredient to your already terrific soup. But don't try to go from minestrone to pea soup.
For what it's worth...

Sara Mathewson said...


I can't even imagine the difficulties of such an intensive workshop. But, I have to agree with both PB and SamArtDog(sorry don't know if your name is just Sam?) anyway, you already have wonderful talent and skill as an artist. take what you can from this workshop and add it to your already amazing skills.

And, i think a break is in order. It take a long time to process all of this and you have been doing it almost 24/7 for what 7 days? That is a lot! I happen to have some obsessions too. And chroma is one of them. chocolate is another! So we have something in common:)

But, if I could paint half as well as you i would be so thrilled.



SamArtDog said...

In other words...
Richard is an excellent chef. How wonderful to have his suggestions for new ingredients! In the hands of an experienced cook like yourself, I know yummy things are to come. For now, let the dough rise...

Jala Pfaff said...

I really love how abstract this one is. Sure you don't want to join "the total abstracters' club"? ;)
Now go eat some of those chocolates you mentioned. In fact, I will too.

Astrid Volquardsen said...

Hi Loriann,
many thanks for sharing your thoughts and input from this workshop. Especially the final critique, because these are elemnts that touches your soul.A break for a couple of days sounds good, to let sink in all the information. Georgia O'Keefe sometimes didn't paint for three months!(Well I hope you don't do that)

Caroline said...

Hi Loriann, just wanted to say you are a wonderful artist even before you studied Richard. I think it is important to study with other artists and learn yet you also need to sing in your own voice and if the painting is your vitamins then don't forget to take them on a regular basis! Do what makes you happy, life is too short not to.

Jala Pfaff said...

By the way, I wanted to add that I don't agree about point number 2. If someone had advised Picasso to stop using so much blue or rose (at various times), or told Piet Mondrian to get away from primary colors for a change, or Van Gogh to stay away from such saturated color because he was overusing it.... Well, someone might have said these things to these painters, but I'm glad they didn't listen.
The colors we choose and the saturations of them, I feel, are a large part of who we are.