Cadmium Red dilemma

Well it was a fun Memorial weekend for my painting, as I had hoped. Weeks ago I primed a 10 x 10" canvas with cadmium red, and I had no idea just how long that would take to dry! WEEKS! But finally it was time to get to work on it, and this is how I spent the h0liday

weekend. I wish I had taken a photo of the bright red canvas right from the start, but instaed you can see my first image, at about the halfway point:

As usual, after the first passage, there is something fresh and exciting that tempts me to call it a wrap and move on (the red really does provide an exciting contrast to the rest of the piece), but also as usual, I decide to keep going, knowing full well this is far from resolved. This has been an occuring issue for me in my work, especially in my figurative paintings, the desire to stop after the initial, instinctual first impressions go-around. But it just never feels right to spend so little time on a canvas. There's something unsatisfying about it, like a one-time encounter with a lover, you're left wondering "Really?? Is that ALL there is to this story??" And the funny thing is, about two days ago I came across some writings by the AMAZING Richard Diebenkorn (one of my top 5 all-time favorites!) and in his 10 rules of painting, #2 is:

"The pretty, initial position which falls short of completeness is not to be valued-except as a stimulus for further moves."

In other words - resist the temptation and KEEP PAINTING - there's more to be learned! And so I did. I kept at this little one for the rest of the weekend and here's where it stands at the moment. After stepping away for now, I will definitely come back to this before it goes up for the can see the final version (at least final for now as a painting can always be stepped back into...) later on, give me a few weeks ok? But I do love occassionally experimenting with a super vibrant, saturated color as the primer, because you never know how it might peek through in the completed piece....if at all....oh and if you'd like to see the other 9 rules of painting by Diebenkorn, here's the link:


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