Monday, February 21, 2022

Leave Well Enough Alone . . .

 . . . for me, not so much. Last night I finished a small (8x8) painting that I was very happy with. Then this morning as I was looking over the piece, I saw a small, minute, minuscule, single piece of sand in the bottom left hand corner. With my little finger, I gently touched the speck. However, I did not realize the painting was still wet. Instead of removing the grain of sand, I left a fingerprint size mess.

The paint was smudged. The good news is that it was in the bottom corner and not that large. The bad news was the smudge was in the middle of a complex swirl that matched 2 or 3 other swirls in that corner. Naturally, it did not occur in an area of solid color. Of course not!

I added a bit of purple into the mess to (hopefully) match the surrounding area. The new paint was too thick and instead of blending in, it made the mess darker and larger. So I added a half drop of water hoping it would diffuse the purple and coordinate with the interrupted swirl. 

No so much. Now the watered down purple paint had spread and occupied even more of the corner. Using a wet brush, I attempted to save the spot. The true blue was now a baby blue color that matched nothing around it.

Then, Eureka! I found a small puddle of wet paint on the paper below the painting that still contained striations of the colors in the swirl. Carefully (very carefully) I picked up a bit of the puddled paint with a tooth pick and dropped it into the wet purple mess. The gods were with me, 2 drops of the new paint mixed with the debacle on the corner of the canvas turned into a colorful swirl that somewhat matched the original spot. 

I surveyed my miracle. Smugly I gave myself credit for saving the painting. (. . . well myself and a Hell of a lot luck). As I turned to put away the toothpick, I noticed a bit of blue paint on the side of my finger. Looking back at the painting, I saw that I had somehow, once again, smeared the corner. I sat back and justified the mess. Perhaps, this is how masterpieces are created. OK, maybe not. For this debacle I will claim creative license and, if questioned, explain the "diffused" spot as the making of a master piece. 

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