Last weekend I visited a small country town art show. It was part of the program of the town’s annual festival. Entry to the exhibition included the opportunity to vote for a favourite painting. The painting with the most votes would receive a $250 prize and all of those who voted for the winner would go into a draw for an equal amount.
I was told that last year the voting had been so spread-out that the winning artist received only 37 votes. After seeing everything on display I could understand why. Everything was very well painted but nothing stood out from the rest.
My vote went to the only abstract in the show.
Seeing the quality of those artists reminded me of how far I still have to go with my own work. I know I couldn’t match their technique. That’s probably why I stick mostly with my abstract work that is more based on instinct than on planned and precise painting. I can either continue doing that or I could stumble along, failing to catch up with what others are doing and become discouraged.
That doesn’t mean that I won’t try to paint still life, landscapes or portraits. I’d definitely like to improve my skills in those areas. But I think of what appeals to me – what kind of paintings would I hang on my walls at home.
While I appreciate the clear skill of well-painted pictures, and find many of them appealing, I’m not sure how long they would keep my interest if I saw them day after day. But there is something about a good abstract.
They make me think, even if the thought is: “what on earth???”
The illustration at the top of this post is a portion of my painting “Fruitful”. For a photo of the whole thing see my “art by onesimus” page.
I recently took it to get a quote for framing. It’s painted on a canvas board so I needed it framed for hanging in an approaching exhibition. Unfortunately common sense deserted me and I ordered something far too expensive and far too extravagant for the purpose.
I should be able to pick it up on Saturday and hopefully I won’t be disappointed with the result. I think the lesson learned is that I need to decide what I want before I go to the framer – and I need to stick as closely as possible to that decision and not be swayed too far off track by any suggested alternatives.