pencil crime

{this is from my NY journal: 6/14/2010}

today i came in and one of the paintings we did last time had four pencil-stab wounds and rips in it. brett told me "by no fault of yours, we're going to re-do this one. it was a bad drawing to start out with." i looked at the ruined paper with half-disbelief. he explained, "this is how i commit to re-doing it." he said something about how if he doesn't destroy it, he has the chance to try to noodle around to make it better, but in the end, you can't make a bad drawing into a good painting (that last part was my interpretation). i love it. what a great thing. i often get too attached to my art, and i need to remember, it's just art. like brett says, it's just paper and pencil.

i remember that when cary henrie came to byu as a guest artist, he was talking about the risks of art. i remember him saying something like, 'it's just a painting! if i mess it up, i can re-do it! it's not like i'm doing brain surgery. now that's scary.'

compare the differences in the top right drawing and the one on bottom.

ten points to brett for not settling! by the way, this shows some of brett's process: the above is an example of what 'underpaintings' are. {according to wikipedia, "in art, an underpainting is an initial layer of paint applied to a ground, which serves as a base for subsequent layers of paint. underpaintings are often monochromatic and help to define colour values for later painting. "} brett does his underpaintings in acryllic first; this was my job during my time there. then he comes back in and oil paints on top of them. in this particular case, the final paintings are all monochromatic, because the book that i was helping him to illustrate will be printed in black and white.

it was pretty rad. : )


Aym said...

I know this wasn't the point of the post, but I LOVE the picture you took of the process. It's so neutral, and then BAM primary colors in all the right places. Love the composition, love the drawings, LOVE Kristin!

--jeff * said...

hmmm, something very interesting about damaging your art so that it has to be redone.....

definitely need to think about that one for a while.

ei blot til lyst

K said...

Most of what I do, I do one time. It either works or it doesn't - meaning, it either is or is not in the end. I think that I often feel that even with words, the real work is the first one. I can edit, but I can't recreate. It never is the same, sometimes better, sometimes never to be captured.

Zachary said...

"There's been a murder! A murder, I say!"

"Really? What happened"

"A painting was killed on a lovely afternoon. May the poor sap pray that I don't find him and sentence him to the same fate."

"WhoawhoawhoaWHOA! A painting was murdered?"

"Yes! That what I said, wasn't it?"

"...a painting...and you're screaming murder?"

"Well it's dead, ain't it?!"

"Yeah, but, there's another painting just like it, but much better right next to it."

"Yeah, so?"

"Maybe the creator himself murdered the painting because is was bad and all wrong, and decided just to create a new and better version of the same thing."

"But he could have saved the first one. He's guilty of murder, I tell you!"

"Well, maybe the real crime lies in him trying to save the other painting."

"What do you mean?"

"I mean this. Does he waste all of his time on something that might take several days and never become anything great, or does he start over and learn from his past to make a better painting faster?"

"I think I see what you mean."

"So, what actually looks like murder, really is the right thing he should do."

"Well, when you put it that way..."

"Exactly. Killing that piece was the best thing he ever did. What came out of it was a better drawing, painting and overall composition. Not to mention it surely saved him a lot of time."

"Alright. I guess I'll let him off this time."

"That'd be the right thing to do."

"Right thing...yeah, yeah, yeah..."

... ... where did all that come from? Wow. I've got to keep my multiple personalities away from this computer. Love the post, by the way. Very wise advice. It's so cool that you were able to experience all of this. Good work.

Jenny said...

Thanks for sharing this. It is very interesting, and I am learning good stuff from it, both applicable to art and life. Thanks!