Blue Pelican, 8×8, oil on gessoboard

Today I set out to paint something completely different–  a mother/child image that thirty minutes in was a complete failure.  I stayed with it for longer than I should have and finally abandoned the panel all together in favor of this one.  When all else fails, paint a pelican.  What I love and hate about painting small and frequently is that I can abandon something one day and pick it up the next.  I feel the simultaneous freedom to quit and the burdensome obligation to pick it back up again.  My plan is to revisit what I started today, see if tomorrow can shed a new light on it and somehow save it.

When all else fails, paint a pelican.  But this one fought with me.  Constantly.  The background started out hot pink.  I used a palette knife,  wiped the texture away with a brush.  Mixed more orange.  Covered it with white.  Signed it.  Painted over the signature, added yellow.  It was exhausting, and I’m not sure I’ll know how I feel until I look at it again tomorrow with fresh eyes.  I can see the fight in it– the layers, the textures.