Monday, 3 January 2011

A Cautionary Tale



Untitled, mixed media, 40" x 30"



Several months ago my daughter asked me to paint an abstract for her dining room, which I agreed to do. She told me that she wanted landscape format and her preference for size, colours and even emailed me some images of paintings that she quite liked. Armed with this information it would surely be easy.

After a somewhat tentative start I was not very happy with it but I persevered, I made several ‘improvements’ and after each I was even less happy. There followed a long period of inactivity during which time I would look at it from time to time and plan the next development, all to no avail. Eventually I painted over the whole thing and came up with this, which is nothing like what she requested. I think there is a moral here.

I am quite happy with this and one or two other people have made approving noises but my daughter is yet to see it.

I wait with baited breath.

17 comments:

La Dolce Vita said...

yes ... following your own muse! this is wonderful and reminds me of the landscape fields seen from the air. wonderful! you should be pleased with it!

pam farrell said...

Ian...sounds like you worked through the conflict...Glad you are happy with the painting. Let us know what happens!

Leslie Avon Miller said...

A gift for each of you - you finding your path, your daughter with a true original Ian Foster. Lucky ones indeed!
Leslie

P.S. And I love this piece!

annell said...

And I like it too! We can never be anyone but ourselves, trying to be someone else, just does work! Bravo!

r.bohnenkamp said...

Hi Ian, commissions are always particularly difficult, but you've done a very good job. Congratulations, your daughter is particularly proud of you.

I wish you a very happy and artful new year!

Donna Iona Drozda said...

Hi Ian
Happy New Year in your Art/Life.

This painting, and its size, are stunning to my artist eye...the texture and the placement of the rectangular shapes work so calmly together...I agree with Cat that there is a quality of aerial view...simply elegant.
Your daughter is fortunate to have such a thoughtful work.

david weir art said...

Nice to see some fresh work Ian
Keep on Pushing
My method is to "do" dont think , FEEL

The Artist Within Us said...

Greetings Ian,

My son also made a request for a painting. That was over two years ago and he is still waiting. I guess my daughter is the smart one, for while I am painting she takes a look at it and when it is done, if she liked it, she wants it.

Commissions are never easy, especially when it comes to abstract images. At least you have been true to yourself, as it resembles 'A wandering minstrel I' another painting of yours.

I figure it is more important to be true to one self.

petras kunstblog said...

Commissioned by a family member is always hard.
Your daughter must be very happy.
I like the combination of the geometric shapes and the warm colours very much.
Greetings from Bavaria

ELFI said...

bonne année 2011!
je regarde toujours avec beaucoup de plaisir vos publications.

ArtPropelled said...

Wonderful! Your daughter must be thrilled with this piece, Ian.

layers said...

You are right-- an artist can only create from their own voice and own creativity-- several years ago my sister in law asked me to paint something for over her new sofa and she sent me the colors of her walls and all the color swatches from the sofa and the matching chairs--- and I spent a very long time on painting, covering up, painting and covering up the canvas and I finally told her I could not do it-- lesson learned!

Kelly M. said...

To wipe out a painting and begin afresh can be the best thing. It's as if the work is speaking, guiding one to deconstruct in order to reconstruct, isn't it? Bravo!

Jala Pfaff said...

It's beautiful, Ian, and indeed, I do think there's a moral to it.

Lynn said...

A beautiful piece.

And a moral, indeed. I think we've all been tempted, to various degrees, to paint what we think other people would want, rather than what comes from our own artistic vision. Which can be an uncomfortable irony and dilemma given that we all hope that our art will be appreciated by others.

Cindy Lew's Studio said...

A job well done! I think she will be very happy with it. In the end you have to follow your heart. Love it.

Warm Regards, CindyLew

William Hall said...

What separates fine art from commercial art is motivation. Fine art is created to please yourself, commercial art to please others. Your art is definitely "fine".

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