Day 18. Kill your darlings

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Yesterday I cleared out three bags of junk from the studio– almost empty paint tubes, halfway finished paintings that, let’s be honest, I have no intention of working on, one million paint caps, markers I never use, random paper and photo references.

It’s starting to feel better. I’m starting to envision what “tidy” might be like.

Today’s painting is my most watery watercolor. It is not tidy. In all my cleaning, I found a spray bottle which I thought would be fun to use on my painting. The sprays were a little more aggressive than I had imagined they would be. In writing, there’s an expression about “killing your darlings.” In other words, don’t get too attached to your most precious phrasings especially when they obstruct the work as a whole. I think it’s good advice for painters too. And no better way than to take a squirt bottle to that meticulously rendered bird body. See what happens.

It’s day 17 and I want to start finding my way with the watercolors. More editing. More blurred edges– a less literal intention. And if I have to kill a few darlings along the way, well, so be it.

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Picture of Denise Hopkins

Denise Hopkins

January 18, 2019

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