Visualize Don’t Copy

Photographs dictate color, values and the unnecessary fluff for those who depend on them for composition.  Local colors are safe choices for most painters, values are perdicitable, and at times to much information.  Stepping out of that familiar comfort zone… trees, red barn, blue sky is not life threatening.  Putting all those pieces together for the sake of composition takes time and several sketches to achieve the goal.  Painting what is there doesn’t stretch the mind nor take much creativity.  No one has escaped that phrase from a novice ‘it doesn’t look like that in the photograph’.  My reply….’it did where I was standing’.  In my years of painting and instructing, the lack of understanding good composition is missing.  Photographs are reference…spur of the moment excitement.  I have seen or taken few photographs that are sound painting compositions.  Shapes, color, value, and sometime format needs a refreshing perspective to produce ‘a one more look’ when framed.  If ask to give a book review, would you rewrite the book….think of using those photographs in the same light….they are only references.   Learn to paint ‘what could be not what is’.  What is….is done…what could be is your interpretation of a familiar subject.  Speaking of the familar….we don’t take the time to review any seen changes that may have taken place…, the familiar is repeated over and over….

Quote from C.S. Lewis

Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring two pence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed.   C.S. Lewis