The more I paint, the less I know about painting, or at least that's what it feels like half of the time. A little seed of an art concept will get planted somewhere in the gray matter between my ears, where it initially lies dormant, then slowly starts to put out roots, and eventually starts to leaf out (can you tell I'm hankering to get out in the garden?). That's usually about the time I notice it, pounce on it, and desperately try to get it to flower. I aspire to produce a rose. What sometimes happens is something out of "Little Shop of Horrors".
I love color, obviously, but color doesn't always love me. Some of the things I've painted look like you've given a blindfolded preschooler a full set of fingerpaints and a six pack of Red Bull. Color done well is an awesome thing to behold. Color not done well is...um...something I find myself familiar with more often than not.
To try and remedy this particular artistic idiosyncrasy, it's time to go back to the basics.
I picked a simple photo subject, with a full range of values, warm and cool color possibilities, an abstract-ish background, and a cute face.
This is my kind of still life. And we're going to start painting him with...what else? Black and white.
To mangle a George Bernard Shaw quote, a person "progresses in all things by making a fool of themselves".
I'm feeling rather foolish right about now. In a good way.
My Muse is observing the proceedings, kicked back in a comfy chair with a cup of herbal tea. To simplicity and beyond!