It’s Always Better The Second Time

Have you ever done something once and not liked the outcome? Of course you have! But what I have found is if you try the same thing again it’s always better the second time. With this kind of logic maybe all of my paintings and drawings should be done at least twice.

Not too long ago I painting a simple flower still life and didn’t like the canvas I was painting on. The second time I painting it was much better. I’m sure if I went through my posts throughout the past years I could find many different occasions where the same has happened.

Better the second time

It's Always Better The Second Time: new drawing crop
Setup of still life along with the first and second drawing

Here is the still life with the first drawing and the second. I tightened up the crop on the still life and I like the outcome much better. Not only that I think my drawing of it took much less time and it turned out better.

It's Always Better The Second Time: still life setup
The same still life setup


It's Always Better The Second Time: beginning of the oil painting
Starting out the oil painting with a under-painting in values

Here is the beginning of my painting, I’m anxious to start on this one. For some reason of have an urge to work very meticulously on this painting. It’s going to be a small one but I want to capture the detail.

It's Always Better The Second Time: underpainting setup
The setup of the under painting

Honestly the still life itself is not that amazing. I picked the objects because their all the basic shapes. Sphere, Cube, Cone and Cylinder. I wonder if I can push the values a bit in the painting and make it much more interesting then the actual setup?

2 thoughts on “It’s Always Better The Second Time”

  1. I’m with you on painting the same subject again. Would you believe I am on drawing/painting #17 of my sister, first from life and then from a photo I took when she posed for me for my birthday. I get determined to “get it” and used to paint and wipe off, paint and wipe off. Now I stop when I realize it’s doomed and just get another panel or sheet of Mylar and start over again. I’m hoping #17 is the last one–that I either finally give up or get it. I’m ready to move on to painting from something other than a lousy iPhone photo!

    • Stick with it Jana, I read somewhere that John Singer Sargent would draw a model multiple times then wipe out paintings more then 10 times before he was satisfied with the results. It gets better each time, and each time you learn a bit more.


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