I used to put my head down and plow through a piece, waiting for it to turn up some magic. Wanting it to be exactly like the picture in my head. The one I saw so clearly.
And it wouldn’t. So I forced it to succumb to my will. I beat on it, rendered it, pounded it into submission. Like a blacksmith creating a sword.
It was agony. This went on for years. Only a few times a year did I get glimpses of that magic. And in those rare pieces, I was able to discern how I got there. I noticed that I had been extremely focused, from concept to completion.
So now it’s your turn. And you step back to look. You try to step outside your skin to see what others see. You have to pretend you don’t know yourself. You have to fool yourself into believing that you are looking at some other person’s artwork. This is hard, man. This is difficult to achieve. It takes……wait for it……practice. Duh. Where have you heard that before?
But there’s hope. Below are questions to help you figure out if your painting is working. Viewers, whether they know it or not, are evaluating your work much the same way. They can’t articulate these questions, but they feel them just as strongly.
Ask yourself these questions about your piece. Analyze and evaluate. The viewer doesn’t know what you meant to do. Only what you showed them.