Going Nowhere Fast

I feel like I’m doing a lot of work but going nowhere fast. It’s been a while since I’ve been confused like this but I know how to deal with it.

It’s weird for some photos I can paint the whole figure without any stumbling. But for some paintings like this one I have a lot of trouble starting and ever step along the way.

I’m sure many artists have felt this before. You look at  a figure and begin to draw or paint and get immediately confused from the overwhelming amount of information coming to you. Nothing you put down seems to work right and you don’t know how to fix it. This is how I’m feeling with this painting.

How I’ve fixed it in the past was to work hard on mental focus. The only way I know to do that well is to block out a lot of information and focus on a small part. For example, for tomorrows session I’m going to forget about all of the painting except for the upper arm, or maybe just the shoulder. But before I even begin painting I’m going to really look hard at the photo and devise a plan of attack. Then I mix up some piles of paint, take my time, one stroke at a time and focus.

Going Nowhere Fast
Going Nowhere Fast
Going Nowhere Fast, detail
Going Nowhere Fast, setup

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