Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Satsuma too/two, deja vu

Well, this was a fun experiment. About five posts ago (post title: Exciting Evening), I painted a satsuma tangerine. I liked the result a lot. Then today I was checking out one of my favorite realist painters, Jonathan Koch, and saw he'd painted a satsuma too (he has painted them before, I believe; he seems to favor fruits and such, like I often do). Of course, I liked his better than mine...

Tonight when I went in to the studio to paint, I didn't have a firm idea in mind for subject matter. I set something up but didn't feel too excited about it. I tried something else--not much motivation there, either.  I then started eyeing the satsuma that was still sitting near my shadow box, looking none the worse for wear after being ignored for 5 days (except that the leaves were more shriveled). Of course, I just had to...

But to make things more interesting, I didn't look at all at the satsuma painting I did the other day. I did use the same palette (only because it's one I've been trying out for a few weeks to see if it suits my needs or not [jury's still out]), but didn't look at anything except the live, lighted tangerine in front of me.  I was extremely curious to know if I would come up with a similar result to what I did before; I'm always intrigued/dismayed/curious as to that elusive thing called "painting style." My art teacher Michelle Philip said she likes to "throw the die again and again and see if the same number (style) comes up."  I guess that's what I was trying to discern in this experiment. I sometimes don't even LIKE my "style," but it does seem to be something like one's handwriting or the way one walks, etc.--it's the way you do something and though you can learn to perhaps change specifics, your "style" will come out, like it or not. (Though hopefully, it will naturally continually evolve on its own, via experience.)

Interesting lesson/experiment tonight. I can't believe how similar this satsuma #2 is to the first one!

More art on my website: jalapfaff.com


http://www.onpainting.wordpress.com said...

This is a very good painting, Jala.

I like the dark background and the way you have variation in it.

Your "style" is you and it is very appealing.

Anonymous said...

When a style is as good and distinct as yours, why even think about change. There seems nothing you can't bring to life with your own rich palette.
Including this beauty.
Coincidentally, I just checked another favorite blog after a long absence and there they were:
Thought you'd enjoy having a look-

Karen said...

I think this one has even more luminosity and glow to it. I wouldn't even think about altering your mark either!!

Jala Pfaff said...

Thank you Bill, Bonnie, and Karen! I guess the thing about what style one seems to have, "like it or not", is that when I look at other artists' work, half the time I think, damn, I'd love to be able to paint that way (loose, colorful, more subtle, less subtle...whatever)...but then when I paint, it just always comes out...the way I paint. Do people just always want something different than what they have, is it just about that, about life, and not really about painting at all? Who knows...it is true that sometimes I swoon over chiarascuro and other times over colorist styles...but I really do want to be able to paint looser, and hope that that will evolve if I just keep painting.

Loriann Signori said...

Jala, Your style is distinctive and rich. I wouldn't change a thing about it. This satsuma tangerine is a small gem.

Jala Pfaff said...

Karen, Loriann, thank you. I think one of my "problems" with my style is that when I look at others' art, I'm like, Oooh, I love that hyper-realism, Ooooh, I love that stylized look, Oooh, I love that semi-abstract look, Oooh, I love that vignetting, Oooh, I love that non-vignetting....In other words, I like so many different styles and looks that it seems like a problem to me that mine "only" come out a certain way. It's like I hate to close the door each painting on all the other possibilities it had!

Karen said...

I think it's only closing a door if you're using your 'style' as a crutch, or a safety net, and making easy paintings that don't stretch what you know...which, obviously you're not, because you're thinking about it all, studying, looking... So, no worries!