Friday, May 15, 2009
We had the problem again last night. It is a recurring problem, and we are learning to handle it better, but...well, it is a problem which has, in the past, resulted in quite the..um..parting of the minds shall we say?
Himself, like me, loves spontaneous brush work. We've spent endless hours studying John Singer Sargent's work in person, in print and on DVD. For us, he is the original. So, consequently, when I'm working on a piece, in the beginning stages, himself will without fail, appear at the studio door and declare the painting completed. "It's done!" he'll shout, already pacing frustratedly because he knows I'll disagree. "If you put another brushstroke anywhere near that canvas, my head will explode! I'm buying it, right now...it's mine...give it to me!"
He has threatened me with everything from hiding the painting from me to confiscating my brushes. And on some level, I do agree with him.
But, I can't seem to help myself. I work until everything looks neat and polished and presentable and invariably he will then pronounce the painting "compromised." He still loves it, but he really loved it before I "overworked" it. The irony is that he suffers from the same malady. I actually rescued a lovely watercolor of me that he was working on before it was too late a few years back, so obviously I don't disagree.
And so it was, when I presented the completed "Boxer" to him last night, he shook his head and uttered those dreaded words..."Just once, I'd like to see a painting leave this house with one brush stroke in tact!" Bite me! I'm 50/50 on the pooch, I think. Either that or I just can't admit I agree. In my defense, I thought his ear needed something to rest on and if I'm not mistaken, there are brushstrokes! But I know what he means. Every inch of the canvas doesn't always have to be covered. The battle continues.