Woman in Pond Painting – Why it sucks

Here is another old painting that I did many years ago. I thought I show this one because I’ve learned a great lesson after doing this painting. In the end, the painting looks very ‘digital’ and feels dead. That’s because I have used a lot of layers in Photoshop to paint this. All the elements were on separate layers and as a result, all the edges where very crisp and clean. I should have done another pass where I blend in all the elements so they don’t feel detached from each other. I suppose another few hours of painting would have fixed it. But there is another issue with using lots of layers in Photoshop to paint.

A funny thing happens to me when I use too many layers in Photoshop, and that is I become very tentative in the painting process. I will see certain things that bothers me as I am painting, but I can’t immediately fix it because I need to switch to that layer where that elements is in first. It might seem like a small extra step, but repeat that throughout your painting process and you will quickly become bogged down. It totally destroys the flow. I don’t know how many other artist feels that way too, but it definitely creates a lot of anxiety for me in the process.

I’ve placed this painting in my Make a Print section. You can download it at full resolution and see what I mean by the crisp edges. Even though I did went in and blended it a little before this post, you can see that it still needs a lot of work to make it feel ‘natural.’

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