Post 2014 (March): Finish or start something new

Post 2014 (March): Finish or start something new

This represents my first post in this redesigned web site and  is very much a work in progress. The overall plan is to discuss my notions and thoughts about making art in general as well as specific works completed or in process.  I would like to think of this as a forum for discussion and as such welcome your every comment. There will be a theme for each post usually based on a specific work.  Many works are for sale –  if interested, please inquire by email for further details.

Finish or  start something new? This is a dilemma I face all too often since I rarely finish a  plein air (outside, on site) in a single sitting. This is especially true while traveling since the purpose of the travel is generally for reasons other than painting such as academic meetings, sightseeing, and visiting family and friends. And since the opportunities for paintings are endless, I often return with quite a stack of unfinished pieces. Although I plan to finish them as soon as possible while things are fresh in my mind using my reference photo, it may be some time before I get around to it. Recently, I decided to resurrect a group taken last summer and finished “Le Tracteur” (12″x 16″, oil on paper on board).

16"x 12" oil on paper on board

16″x 12″ oil on paper on board

As I worked from the photos, I was surprised how vivid my memories of the  scene remained:  the striking difference between the cool background trees and the warm foreground vegetation, the bright poppies and other wild flowers and that strutting tractor. The scene is from an area in south western France which we have visited many times, staying at the same house (converted from an old  tannery)  owned by a lovely couple we consider friends. Although my wife is fluent in French, I speak mostly through my painting which our hosts, Maria and Gerard seem flatteringly interested. When Gerard saw my (unfinished) painting, he exclaimed, ” Oh, le Tracteur!”,  I thought, what a great title! – and an appropriate gift to these special people.  Completing this painting was such a rewarding experience that I have begun working on another, Luz Saint Saveur in the Pyrenees. Stay tuned.

Although this painting is not for sale, other travel paintings are available in the Travel Paintings Gallery.

4 thoughts on “Post 2014 (March): Finish or start something new

  1. It is wonderful to paint several paintings at once. Putting some down for a bit and completing others in a day or two. A varied diet never bores. Look forward to visiting you through your website O talented One!

    • Saul Rosenstreich

      My problem is that I have too many in the pipe line. My goal is to finish them more quickly, at least the more inconsequential ones (which at present is most of them). Your comments (and you) are greatly appreciated).

  2. It’s all in the process, it’s often said. Why worry about how many you paint? I have stacks of my own work that form a history of my development. Some of them are unfinished and maybe I’ll finish them someday when I need them for a 1-man show (ha, ha). But, I don’t think I’ll want to do that. I’d rather, for the most part, start anew using the skills and sensibilities that I’ve developed since. But, everyone has their own purpose.
    So, I ask you: what is your philosophy of art? Why paint at all?

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