Sunday, August 15, 2010

One More Time!

Like a dog with a bone, for some reason I just couldn't let this one go.  Maybe it's stubbornness, or, put in a more positive light, persistence.  I guess there was something I liked about this piece, enough that I thought it deserved one last try.  If you'd like to see some of its past incarnations, here is the first version:

 After getting some advice, I tried to fix it, but still wasn't satisfied with it, here.  So I decided to use Photoshop to do some experimental cropping, here.  Ultimately, I was unable to make a decision.

After putting it in my "scrap works" drawer, I came upon it again last week while re-organizing my studio.  I'm a big proponent of recycling old artwork anyway; most of my collages include pieces of my work that I have "scrapped", so to speak.  Call it what you will: reusing, recycling, thriftiness, or just being a plain old pack-rat.  Sometimes it works beautifully, and sometimes, it doesn't, but my motto is: It's worth a try.

I've also been inspired by Jeane Myers's recent series of gorgeous re-dos at ARTIT, whose motto is similar to mine: "What's to lose...?"   That's only one of many great examples, so please do check out her blog for several others that are just as awesome- as is all of her work.  In fact, I just noticed that her newest post is also about a reworked piece!

Here's my final (I think) version of this piece:

Ingredients: multi-media art board, vintage maps, vintage book pages, handmade papers, joss paper, graphite, watercolor pencil, Pitt artist pen, metallic paint pens, eyelet, vellum, PVA glue, acrylic gel medium, kitchen sink (ha!).

I have cropped the top, bottom, and left side, and added more book pages and a few other bits.  Of course, the main difference is the addition of the raven.  I felt it needed a focal point to pull everything together, but it had to be something strong in value to hold its own against all the bright colors.  My solution was to go with black, which seems to work.  It's entirely possible that this piece is way overworked, though I think some of the compositional problems have been resolved.  What do you think?


  1. What´s to lose is right...always worth a try if you yourself are not happy with a piece. I liked the other versions but with the raven it says so much more. It is like he is flying all over the world....I really like it.
    Cynthia Schelzig

  2. It doesn't seem overworked at all to me.... the raven is a strong focal point, and there seems to my eye to be a secondary or accent point of that spiral-like thing below it to the right (if I remember 'cause I'm writing and not seeing it!) Anyway, I quite enjoy this piece.... the textures and, of course, love the raven!

  3. Overworked? Yikes, don't think so, but seeing the evolution of this is inspiring.

    I really like the end result, but the others are outstanding also.

    The bird made it pop out though!


  4. Yes, the addition of the strong raven is wonderful. Rest (if at all possible) in your success.

  5. Good call, Sharmon!

    The addition of the raven made all the difference!


  6. Hi Sharmon
    I once became so irritated with an Aunt who criticized one of my earliest paintings because she declared it to have no "center of interest". I NEVER forgot the comment though and when I look at the addition of your wonderfully drawn translucent raven/crow ...guess what comes to mind..uh huh...great centerof interest ;-) makes the piece really hum.

  7. excellent resolution! I think this is a really strong piece now, the raven sucks you in and then the texture really holds my attention once I get there. I imagine it is even more wonderful in "person"


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