Sometimes I will get an image in my mind that seems all fleshed out and full. It’s just a matter of moving that image from the inner workings of my consciousness into the outer world of reality. Sometimes, it goes smoothly and the final painting matches that first thought of it.
But more often, that trip from thought to reality produces something completely unlike the original vision. And sometimes that is not so good. The work shows the struggle in trying to force the vision into reality and the whole thing looks forced and without rhythm. But occasionally, one slips out that is not at all like the original vision but somehow finds its own rhythm and comes to life on its own.
I think that is what happened with the painting shown above, a small 9″ by 12″ canvas that I call Where the Winds Gather. I’ve had an image of this painting in my mind for a few weeks and as I would be doing other things it would often bounce through my mind. But it looked much different than this painting. The color was not the same nor was the manner in which the whirls of wind in the sky were painted. Some of that is the result of working in a smaller size which restricted the type of marks I could make with my brush.
There was a point when I was well into this piece that I could see that it had strayed far afield from my original concept and I began losing my enthusiasm. For a while I wanted to just set it aside or simply call it a day and paint it over. But I decided to push through and see if it could evolve into something more. And slowly it did, at least in my own eyes. There’s an interesting balance of rough and soft in this and the pattern in the sky came together much better than it appeared in its earlier form.
There’s just something I like in this piece. Maybe it’s just the fact that it came to life despite my own original misgivings. I know that I admire that kind of determination from someone in overcoming the low expectations placed on them. Grit.
Maybe that should be the title– Gritty Determination.