Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Enough's Enough!

Jennifer at Art, Words, Life posted a great poll on her blog yesterday.

She asks...
How do you know when you're done with a piece of art? Or writing? Or are they really ever "finished" at all?

I don't always know when a piece is really done either. Sometimes I overwork things. (I know on a recent piece I went back and re-did the eyes even though I thought they were finished long before.) I really think there are times when we don't want to stop working on a piece because we've become attached to it. I also think we need to get "used" to the idea of the work being done. If I can set it aside and come back to it later and it still feels done, then it's done! This goes for writing and revisions too. The whole looking at your work with "fresh eyes" works!

"...are they ever really finished..."
I think in most cases we can always look back on an illustration and find something we're not happy with or an area we would handle differently. Or in writing, a better word choice might come to you later on. But I think that's a good thing! It's what helps you grow as an artist. We are perfectionists. But then again, not everything can be perfect.

Then there are deadlines. They can make you decide a piece is finished real quick! And that is a real good thing! I like deadlines. Deadlines make things happen.

How about you? When do you know you're done? I forgot to say sometimes the opposite of not wanting to stop happens. Sometimes, I get tired of working on one piece and just want to be done!

Note: Anyone following my blog with a keen eye for observation, might recognize the corner shown above. Yes, I finished drawing Mary! In color. And yes, it was re-worked, overworked, and set aside for a couple weeks. I look at it now and it feels finished. As soon as I get a good scan of the final piece, I'll post the steps of how color was applied.


artgirlATL said...

I just found your blog thanks to Holli's site. I love your style.

Don Tate II said...

That's always a good question, and I don't know that I really ever finish. I'm done when I'm finally tired and ready to move on. Budget often rules when I'm done, too. The lesser the budget, the quicker I'm done.

Susan Sandmore said...

I just found your blog, Gail, after having just started mine. Does my "picture" look kinda familiar?

I never feel "done" which is unfortunate because it keeps me from wanting to submit my writing--don't want to send til it's "perfect" and all. This year I'm going to try to be more brave and satisfied with as-good-as-I-can-get-it-for-now.

P.S.--Can I post a link to your blog on mine? I'd like to, and I'd like to give you credit for my logo.

Jennifer said...

Thanks for linking, Gail!

I guess in general, deadlines or just being plain tired of a piece make me feel done (though there are exceptions.) Like many I struggle with that elusive idea of making it "perfect." I'm trying to get over that. :-)

gail said...

Glad you found me! Doesn't Holli have some cool blogs going? I'll be sure to check out yours too.

Oh, I forgot about the budget part. So true.

You just now found my blog! :) Cool picture!! Very eye-catching. :) I know what you mean about waiting for "perfect". I'm starting to get over that. (Or maybe I'm just trying to convince myself.)It makes you wait too long. Link me up, no problem!

Ditto the perfection comment above! Thanks for starting the topic.

Susan Sandmore said...

Hey, don't make fun of me--I'm slow, what can I say? I know you gave me the address a bazillion years ago, but I've only just gotten brave enough to enter the blogosphere.

P.S.--I've listed you on my blog as an official stalkee.