Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Killing the Insect Dots

I'm sitting here waiting for the final coat of medium to dry on the collage I just finished, thinking about what I learned. The piece is based on dots arranged on a diagonal checkerboard. It changed at least three times and took two days before it was finished. I started it yesterday and went to bed last night not knowing what to do. The original version had big dots of watercolored encyclopedia insects. Cute but boring and the scale was wrong so I took them off. What I had left looked like somebody's linoleum kitchen floor. Then this morning I found that the 3/4 faces (in my Archive of Indecision since 2006) were just the thing it needed!

The trick is to know what to commit to so the piece moves forward while at the same time acknowledging that voice in my head that shouts: "That's a mistake--don't do it!" The purpose of starting the piece was to use the insect plate with the pretty yellow background, so giving it up was hard but, ultimately, the right thing to do. This one taught me not to force things. I'm learning when to walk away. And some day those insect dots in the Archive might be just the ticket!

No comments: