pre and post scrumble "grey 2/the guitar player" / by Philip Tarlow

2:46: when i brought the painting back to the house, which i do to critique it when looking at compared with the 3 others in the series we have in our 2 living rooms. mikela took one look, and made an excellent observation.: the composition would improve tremendously if i lose the painting and it's frame behind her head. that's what's going to happen tomorrow a.m.

1:20 pm: the slight modification i spoke of below has been made. the eye is no longer drawn to the suggestion of trees in the painting above the girl's head.  the earlier version on the left; after modification on the right, BELOW:

having said that, and as i gaze at this digital reproduction on my screen and then at the actual painting, i am reminded of what my old friend, the late henry gelzdahler said: the photograph is not the painitng. not even close. the sum total of brush strokes, textures....the IS-NESS of the painting, can never be reproduced.

BELOW: yesterday's version is on the left; today's after extensive scrumbling, on the right.

scrumbling: a word i made up to describe scraping/rubbing/dragging the palette knife over the surface, then painting back into it. it still needs work, but is moving in the right direction. the eye, rather than getting stuck on the details, such as her curled locks, moves smoothly across the picture plane. there is more choice, more freedom on the part of the viewer to alight here or there. the mind/eye fills in suggested details as it fabricates it's own meanings. one has the capacity to dream more easily, while at the same time being able to notice and appreciate the painterly passages as painterliness rather than fingers; guitar or necklace.

to give you some idea of what the painter feels during this process: if you make the deail of her head, above, full screen and examine how the paint has been brushed onto to the areas of light around her curls, this is pure delight for the painter. like the most delicious desert; the hottest sex; the greatest satisfaction at having resolved a thorny problem with an elegant solution. all that and more.

that said, my eye still gets a little stuck on the suggested trees in the framed picture above her head. i'm going to address that right now, and then post the results. 

by the way, no one, for some reason, ever makes comments on these posts. i welcome your comments and look forward to reading some soon. just click on the comment link, below left.