I've discovered that there are some subjects which I paint that I can get lost in... or perhaps distracted by. I know this can happen when I'm not painting as well. I can't go for a hike without being absorbed body, mind and soul, by a tree, or the sky ... or the mountains. So often when I paint, I find my focus shifts and it is difficult to create a "focal point". I think that having a focal point is something that is important to the composition of a painting... but I must confess that I do struggle with that in my own work.
For example... this painting was inspired by a recent hike. I was absorbed with the patches of red on one of the slopes and started painting in my mind. I noted that the trees were of a certain shape... and I noted the beautiful distant mountains. So when I went back to my studio and started this painting... i knew exactly how I wanted to paint the slope, and I did. Then I started on the sky and the distant mountains. As I painted the sky... I felt the wind, the coolness, the vastness and forgot about my slope.
Then, of course... the trees... which are never ever an afterthought for me. Ideas kept coming... and I actually went down in the middle of the night to try out a colour I had been thinking about. I forgot about the slope again.
So... then I wonder as I look at my painting.... do the trees distract from the slope? Does the sky take away from the trees? Is this a well-composed painting?
I think perhaps lots of artists question their work. Painting is such an experiential thing for me... i really get lost in it. I think that is one of the things I enjoy about it the most... disappearing into what I am painting. I also LOVE... being able to share what I see.
This painting is called "High"
Liz R. Derksen is an artist living in BC.