Saturday, March 30, 2013

Storm Over Kolob- Bridging the Gap

Storm Over Kolob- 30" x 40" ; oil on canvas by Greg Newbold
One of the risks you run as an artist is knowing when to call something done. I have been painting hard on this first large canvas for about a week now and I think it is about finished. At the same time, when working on a picture like this, I find that the gap between my artistic intent and what actually made it to canvas is larger than what I wanted. I know that at some point, I just have to quit and call it done, but I am still making mental gyrations to figure out if there is something I could have done differently or that I could still do to close the gap between my vision and reality. I guess in many ways, this is a good thing. At least I know I fell a bit short. Too often when I teach, I see students that not only don't realize what is wrong with a piece, but they don't even see the gap. They don't see the problems or what would make it better. Over time, some figure it out but some never do. The rest of us keep striving to close the gap, to make what we envision in our minds become real on the canvas. Have any of you felt this same way? What do you do to bridge the gap? 

11 comments:

Rob Colvin said...

Looks done, looks done, looks done! WOW!

Greg Newbold said...

Thanks Rob! Just a couple more things that I don't think show up well on the scan and then I am calling it.

Amy said...

I bridge the gap by avoiding doing art :)

Mike Blake illustration said...

I imagine that your gap is MUCH, much smaller than mine (you've had years of experience and success)...but for me I make alot of sketches. I'm not very good at visualizing the whole composition so I focus on pieces (I call them strings) while slowly working towards a whole...what I see/feel in my head. I know that Leyendecker did the same thing except he took it to the next level with a finished piece of the painting (just google 'Leyendecker studies').

Greg Newbold said...

Amy- :)
Mike, That is a great way to work toward bridging the gap. As you remember from the last few posts, I too did a painted study for this piece and it helped a lot. When I am doing illustration projects, I also do a lot of sketching to get the compositions and details worked out. It is a good process to follow. I love to look at Leyendecker's studies too- so well resolved by the time he hits the finished pieces.

Julia Kelly said...

It is wonderful- just drove through that country and it IS that vivid after a spring storm or when the light is just right!

suziqt said...

Fantastic piece Greg!

Will Terry said...

Wow! that's a nice one!

Greg Newbold said...

Thanks Will and Suzy.
This one is going down to the Springville Spring Salon tomorrow. Wish it luck!

M.R. Weaver said...

It's like a delicious rock rainbow!

Greg Newbold said...

Thanks Michelle!