it failed the house test / by Philip Tarlow

2:49 PM:  extensive changes were made to everything but the face. that's a challenging thing to do, since you're treating the picture plane as if one area were more important than the other. but i didn't want to sacrifice the delicate beauty of the face, and i think what i did worked. there may be more needed, and as always i'll know once i hang it in the house later this afternoon. BELOW: the before (left) and after.

right now i'm going to clean up and get ready for our afternoon stupa walk. right now the temperature is hovering around freezing; a lot warmer than it's been over the past 3-4 days. we'll put on our cleats, which keep us form slipping on the ice, and make our way up to the stupa: about a mile uphill.

11:13 AM: gaze 14 was brought back to the house & hung on the prime east wall, where you can see it from 0 to 60 feet. it didn't pass the overnight test, so this morning it was brought back to the studio for additional work. part of the problem, which has been ongoing, is that i attempted, unconsciously, to repeat the successes of the previous painting, gaze 36, which was inspired in part by a burst of energy created by the prospect of collaborating with a local artist. i had been inspired by the collaboration i discovered between rubens and bruegel, which lasted many years.

but, whatever the inspiration, repeating a solution discovered in one painting never translates to another. it simply doesn't work hat way! artists do it all the time, but it's obvious to the discerning viewer. ABOVE: on the left, the successful gaze 36, on on the right my doomed attempt at re-creating those solutions in gaze 14. will anyone ever notice or appreciate all this? irrelevant! you do your best. period.