Thursday, April 29, 2010

Quiet Yonge Street, Toronto

24x24 Oil on Canvas
Doing this painting was almost enough to make me want to quit painting. I painted and wiped and painted and wiped the reflection and then the buildings. And still had the values wrong. Also, sometimes what you like about a painting is what makes it difficult. I liked the abandoned feeling of the street, allowing the reflections to be front and centre. But the lack of any dominant shapes, such as people or cars, seemed to leave an emptiness to the composition and the scene. I decided it was time to get away from it, let it sit around for awhile and revisit later. (Before I wiped the whole thing)

11 comments:

Last Cup Of Coffee said...

when looking at this painting - no one knows how much you suffered! it looks fantastic! I wanted to quit today too - maybe we should have weekly throw away your brushes party - but neatly so that we can go and get them back out of the garbage - because no matter how much we want to quit sometimes we are artists and we just must paint! am I right?

Last Cup Of Coffee said...

ps Threw everthing away this morning. After seeing your painting must go get it out and paint!

Kim said...

Oh Catherine, I don't think it needs revisiting! Isn't it funny how that is - because when I saw it (before reading your entry) I thought it was gorgeous. I think the sweep bringing you down the road feels good compositionally and there is a spacious feeling that is really nice. Nothing about it rubs me the wrong way. And I think your figures (and their shadows) have just the touch of pop that intrigues the viewer. I really love it.

Catherine Jeffrey said...

Thanks for sharing your suffering, Myra. Somehow it made me feel better :)
I am so glad you got everything out of the garbage..because you are so right...we must paint no matter what!
Kim, thanks for your positive words. I think we have a vision of what the finished painting will look like, and when it isn't fulfilled, it is disappointing. Thats why sometimes I like to hide it, get away from it, and then look at it with a refreshed state of mind.

Claire Beadon Carnell said...

I think this is stunning. Even from looking at the tiny avatar of your work in my blog roll I knew this was going to be an exceptional piece of work. It has such a sense of place, atmosphere and depth. You can almost feel the humidity. Absolutely wonderful, even if you struggled to get there it was well worth it!

Ramesh Jhawar said...

I don't see any reason why you should quit! This is absolutely a wonderful painting! Very expressive!!

Susan Roux said...

Stepping back is good.

It looks awesome!

Janelle Goodwin said...

Glad I'm not the only who has those times of wrestling with a painting. One time a painting almost had me in tears. It's my brother's favorites and he has it on his wall.

Actually I think this painting is wonderful!

Carol Schiff Studio said...

CJ, The painting doesn't show your struggle! I agree with everyone else that it is quite wonderful and I hope that you can see that too. I find that when I have problems with one, it is never one of my favorites, no matter how others feel about it.

Jan Yates, SCA said...

I almost wish that you hadn't titled it until after I devoured it-as it took my breath away with the-quiet. How rare is that on a downtown Toronto street? And it also made me feel the stillness -and smell the scent-of rain--those wonderful and necessary rainy days. As far as your mastery of reflections, values and atmospheric light-they are handled skillfully and beautifully. To 'suffer for one's art-is just that--why do it at all if it doesn't mean anything? Now get out there to the galleries--you are ready!!!

diddamsdigitalart said...

I think they've said it all... I really like the empty street, hazy light, and the small figures that draw me in.