Why do some paintings turn out better than others ?

Why do some paintings turn out better than others ?

I have always painted, always. I am happiest with a brush in my hand , I can draw adequately and I like to create but it is with paint that I feel I can express myself best. And when I say paint I mean watercolours. But I have no idea why sometimes it 'works' and other times it doesn't.

Let me try to explain what I mean.

Some of my best pieces have been painted reasonably quickly. Take Curled Fox who arguably has been my most successful piece to date I painted him quickly almost without thinking 

But I can never paint him again, I can see the speed and the confidence in the painting . If I try to reproduce that I get tight, try to copy him, it doesn't end well.....

I think being in a good place helps, feeling lost in the painting .....Another 'happy' painting happened because I suddenly had a thought and I had to give it a go, the spark of the idea had to be ignited and so the swan landing was born....

So I HAVE to paint something just to see if it works . But believe me, many times it doesn't work but when it does I feel very happy and on I go ,splashing around.

Other paintings emerge from adversity, the whole thing goes wrong and I shove it under the tap and I enjoy the patterns that emerge more than anything I could ever do, this is how my owls have come to life. Watercolour is all about the happy accidents and using them to my advantage.

Then I think it is important to fit the painting to the state of mind I am in, some days are just not commission days . Like the day I saw an elephant that inspires me and  my elephant series came into being. These are so lovely to do as they are just in Paynes Grey and I don't have to think about too many colours

So if I can get these things right and a little sprinkling of magic ,some days are very good ones indeed .


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The elephant painting is beautiful, the lack of so much color is what I like. Painting to what inspire are the best days:)


You aren’t on your own Rachel…I find some paintings just happen and others? Well they either take work or sometimes they need putting aside for another time, for when I am either in a different frame of mind or even for when my paintings skills have developed further. The ones that work for me are usually when I don’t have to think much about them, I seem to know where to go with my brush, what colours to use etc etc. Having said that sometimes the ones I have laboured over turn out well too so I really have no idea what it is!!!


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