Critique and Response




In process pastel still-life painting.

In process pastel still-life painting.

I thought that I would share with you the evolution of a painting of mine, incorporating the good advice of artist friends with whom I meet regularly.  A crit group is a great way to improve your work–you see flaws as soon as you put a piece before the group!  Then they have more ideas about how to improve your piece as well.  I have learned so much from my peers.  We all look at things differently and having other’s opinions is rich!  We are a a bit different than many groups because we set little problems before us and then share our solutions.  Last time we each did a riff with complementary colors.  This was a take on that, doing another bouquet that is yellow and blue instead of orange and blue.

Photoshopped Bouquet #5

Photoshopped Bouquet #5

So, above is the painting I brought in.  It was suggested that I simplify elements that were too detailed or drop them together; the clippers in the lower right, the petals and some engraving on the pitcher.  “You have to decide if you are a two hair painter (total detail nik) or not.” Also, to change the light on the pitcher, making it darker on the left side and painting a more defined, darker, shadow on the left side of the pitcher. Also, to add some light on the back of the silver tray. “Your daisies on the tray are not ON the tray.” I Photoshopped my painting to see what those ideas might be like.

Below is the final painting, taking into account everyone’s comments and deciding what would work for me.  I am sorry that the lighting of the photo is a bit different than the others, it is pretty true I think.  You can see that I decided to take almost all their advice–I have found they are nearly always right.  But I did keep the clippers and I thought that the reflection of the silver tray should lighten the left edge of the pitcher a bit. Much better, right?  What would you have done?


About Kate McGee

Pastel artist who paints real and imagined landscapes.
This entry was posted in Pastels, Still Life. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Critique and Response

  1. Kate, I especially enjoy the color harmony of the pitcher reflections and the daisies. In your initial approach the pitcher was competing for attention. It almost became the star and not one of the supporting cast members. I love the clippers, they reinforce the human element.

  2. laurakvasnosky says:

    I love your work.

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