Friday, June 4, 2010

The Photo's Impression

I finished this painting last night. It's been a work in process for a few weeks now. It was getting muddier and muddier as each new layer was applied, and further from having any dynamic range. It was looking very dark grey and monotone.

So i thought "what the hell" and washed as much as would come off in the kitchen sink. I was left with a slightly lighter green colour block devoid of any shapes or patterns. Then i roughly sketched a scene from a group of seven painting with watercolour pencils onto the wet paper. I quite like the result.

The photo (above) i took of the painting seems to have a much greater tonal range from the light areas to the dark darks than how the painting looks in real life. And more colorful too. If i sold this painting online, the photo would definitely have to be darkened and desaturated to more closely resemble how i see the real painting. Otherwise i think the photo would be a misrepresentation of the painting. Maybe i just remember it under bad light? I've altered the photo to resemble how i remember the painting (below).

Then there is the issue of how i'd really like it to be. So i went to town in Photoshop and adjusted the tonal curves and saturation quite a bit. The image below is the one i prefer. I might have a large print made from this variation and see how it compares to the original painting. I wonder if Photoshop needs to be how i finish all my work and only sell prints. The original painting perhaps trashed as inferior?
June 16th Update:
Istockphoto rejected the version that i considered "final" (above) for being too dark. So i lightened it up, and resubmitted it (below).

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