When to Stop

Watercolor Painting, Morning Walk

Brian Bailey, Morning Walk, Watercolor, 10″ x 8″, © 2015

I think that, for me, knowing when to stop might just be the most important factor in a drawing or painting.  I’ve overworked so many paintings, thinking that I could make them better by filling in just a little more information.  I think the truth is that my work is usually strongest when I can convince myself to make it quickly and leave it alone for at least a day or two, at which point I might add a detail that makes it more striking.  Working on a painting while it’s all still wet and letting washes bleed into each other can feel like walking on a tightrope, where one false step can lead to disaster, but it can also give the work a greater sense of unity.  I feel that one of my strongest tools is leaving a washed surface alone and letting the viewer fill in the details. It’s all about knowing when to stop.

I want to say thank you to all of the people that read and comment on these posts.  Your support and encouragement are awesome!  Just a reminder, please check out my Etsy store, ArtFromBrian, if you are interested in purchasing any of the work on this site.  Thanks again!

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5 thoughts on “When to Stop

  1. Very wise words, Brian. Most of us are always playing that fine line between too much or too little. I like this composition of the lone figure walking from light to shadow to light again.

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