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Whenever I paint I try to have another paper or canvas or something to wipe the excess and leftover paint from my main project.  I really liked the wispy circles and soft colors.  I recently heard an artist talk about not following in love with a background because so much gets covered up.  This one really changed.




Completely different direction.  I wasn’t sure if I liked it at all at this stage.





I brought back the circles and started to like it again.  But I was stuck with where to go from here.





My word for 2012 came to my rescue (or the giant letters I am altering came to my rescue).  This word reminds me to just start- not try to plan it all out, make it perfect- just start.  So, that is what I did since I was stuck as to where to go next.



I traced the letters and put white paint to push the background to the background.





Red gelato around the letters to make them pop out a bit and purple watercolors around it.




I consider this a work in progress.  It doesn’t feel finished yet and I am not sure why.   What do you do when this happens to you?



{ 29 comments… add one }

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  • Carol April 13, 2012, 12:19 pm

    Colorful and dazzling creation ~ thanks for sharing the process ~thanks, namaste, ^_^

    I let me creation ‘sit’ and then look at another day with fresh eyes ~ ^_^

  • Lindsay Drya April 13, 2012, 12:32 pm

    What a great idea!! I will sure give this a try too, thanks for inspiring me! 🙂

  • Faye April 13, 2012, 12:54 pm

    Beautiful and colorful. I actually see two paintings that I like. I like the one with the white painted over the circles and I like the last one. I’d suggest setting it aside for a week and then looking again to see if it looks finished or not.

  • Pointypix April 13, 2012, 12:58 pm

    it’s so interesting to see this progress and amazing that it started life only as somewhere for you to daub excess paint! I love how it looks so far and am not sure that I would change anything about it at all!

  • gloria April 13, 2012, 1:29 pm

    I like that you wipe the brush on another paper and it too becomes a work of art. Excellent idea and your work is outstanding. Thx for stopping by my PPF post. Have a great weekend.

  • Kat April 13, 2012, 2:41 pm

    Hello Carolyn, it’s a great piece, I love how you went through the stages with us. I would normally just leave it in a corner and see if I have any vision to add to it in the next days…just wait and see if anything else pops up or not?? You might just love it as it is!

  • giggles April 13, 2012, 4:01 pm

    I gotta say I am lovin it!! Really pretty! Great word by the way and thanks so much for sharing your process! Very inspiring… this is a happy place you have over here!!
    Happy ppf!

    Hugs Giggles

  • Annette G April 13, 2012, 5:11 pm

    Love the clever way you have created this. Happy PPF, Annette x

  • carlarey April 13, 2012, 9:29 pm

    So amazing that this started life as the paper equivalent of a paint rag. Brilliant!

  • Ginny April 13, 2012, 10:48 pm

    Carolyn, I love this. It is amazing to watch you create and see what happens. I happen to like it just as it is but if you are not sure just sit with it for awhile. I would love to see what you do with the painting next.

  • Susan Tidwell April 13, 2012, 10:52 pm

    I love what you created! Maybe just some black text stamping on background and you’re done, but I like it the way it is too. Usually I just let it sit for awhile and come back to it with fresh eyes.

  • Rita McGregor April 13, 2012, 11:45 pm

    I love it right now as it is. Love the contrast between the whitish background and the bright colors. Really cool! 🙂

  • Stephanie April 14, 2012, 2:07 am

    such a great effect, love your start page

  • Valerie-Jael April 14, 2012, 3:33 am

    Beautiful colours. If I am not sure, I put the things on the side, and look again after some days or weeks, and then I can mostly decide if finished or not! Valerie

  • iamrushmore April 14, 2012, 7:15 am

    I like that the letters aren’t linear, yet you can still read the word. makes it so much more interesting. when you’re busy working on a million other projects you’ll use a material that gives you the a-ha moment and you’ll know just what to do to finish this piece. and if that a-ha moment never comes, it’s because this is already done! (or if you’re me, and you’ve lost interest or never liked it, you cut it up into postcards)

  • Pauline Leger April 14, 2012, 9:31 am

    I so loved seeing the progression of this Carolyn and the final piece is AMAZING!
    I love it just as it is – it’s beautiful. i love how creative your are when you feel stuck on something. Fantastic. xoxo

  • Diana Evans April 14, 2012, 9:34 am

    I love this technique!!! you have inspired me with your work!! wishing you a wonderful weekend!!!

  • Harriet April 14, 2012, 10:20 am

    Carolyn this is so inspiring for me today… I love the technique and your word … thanks for sharing…

  • Mary in IL April 14, 2012, 11:02 am

    I like it just the way it is but sometimes I come back with an edge or border (ink, paint tape, hand-drawn, whatever) to “finish” it. I agree with others to let it go for a day or two and come back to it.

  • Gloria J Zucaro April 14, 2012, 12:06 pm

    This is terrific! I love the way the background now is isolated in certain areas. the red and purple make it pop as you said. Thanks for sharing the process! My answers usually show up in my dreams at night. I will have been puzzling over it and it will come to me.

  • Mary C. Nasser April 14, 2012, 12:49 pm

    Now I want to keep a blank canvas next to me to wipe off my excess paint, too! 🙂
    I love how you incorporated your 2012 word…and what a great word it is!
    Your painting is gorgeous…would have never guessed it began with excess paint! 🙂
    Happy PPF!!
    Mixed-Media Map Art

  • Jo April 14, 2012, 5:18 pm

    I love your work, your play. Love the colors in this.

  • Victoria April 14, 2012, 8:48 pm

    So beautiful and full of energy and spirit! There is a definate sense of magic about it..it will call you back when divine!

  • Tracey Fletcher King April 14, 2012, 9:08 pm

    This is looking pretty finished to me, but I just pop it up on the wall and let it stare down at me for a few days when I am feeling like that… inevitably it all comes clear in a few days, or weeks…sorry for the late visit…xx

  • Petrea April 14, 2012, 10:37 pm

    Very inspiring- amazing how it changes form beginning to end!
    Happy PPF

  • Nordljus April 15, 2012, 3:43 am

    Wonderful progress, I really like the result, with your word incorporated in it too. And I like the “double meaning” of the word that comes out so beautifully in this composition – “art” and “start”.

  • Corrine April 15, 2012, 3:44 pm

    Wow, popadoo, this rocks. I must have been on your wavelength, painting backgrounds from workdesk paper too. The red gelato makes this sing! xox

  • Terrie: Creative Explorer April 15, 2012, 5:46 pm

    I always like it when artists share their process and we can see how a painting or project develops. It gives me hope that some of my disasters might still have potential. I love the idea of using the big letters and that even though they’re jumbled, they’re totally readable. Great idea, great result. All the advice seems to be the same…..give it some time and return to it later…..that’s usually what I do to and I find that my falling asleep or just waking up moments when my mind goes to my art is where I often find the solution….

  • Christi McBride April 22, 2012, 5:49 pm

    Stunning inside and out. Happy Anniversary! Bright, Vivid and full of meaning! Great Word for 2012 🙂