Let me tell you about the ‘never-ending painting’.
It’s a painting, or should I say, a series of paintings layered, one on top of the next, on a 30 x 40 inch canvas. No, it’s not some new fad, and I’m not doing it deliberately… it’s just that each time I ‘finish’ a painting, I’m not completely happy with it so it disappears under yet more layers of paint. So far, four separate paintings lie beneath the current version (thank God for acrylics, right?!).
Why do it to myself, you ask? Well, you could say it’s the new me. In the past, I used to hang on to every single painting I ever did, regardless of whether it was good, bad, or indifferent. I couldn’t conceive of destroying them. A painting’s a painting, after all!
This ‘new me’, however, is a reborn risk-taker and someone who flatly refuses to let a painting live if it doesn’t prove its worth. If it doesn’t excite, intrigue or inspire, it’s gone-burgers (New Zealand slang for ‘outta here’).
Of course, this inevitably brings up the topic of ‘letting go’. And, I know that for some, it’s a touchy subject. Perhaps it sits more comfortably with me due to the fact that I’ve spent so many years getting over creative burn-out, that I feel like there’s no time to waste. I’m no spring chicken any more (sad, but true), and life is just too short to be feeling precious about mediocre paintings!
So, it’s back to the studio and my never-ending painting. Perhaps this time…