Building Sand Castles
9 x 12 Oil on Panel
Every time an artist paints he learns something new. It happens slowly, almost imperceptibly, but one day you suddenly realize that you paint better than you used to. I recently had such an epiphany. When it happens to me I am overcome with a desire to repaint every painting I ever did. The only paintings that are spared from this insanity are those that have been sold or those that are on consignment and in the protective custody of a gallery. Everything else is fair game. Building Sand Castles, painted en plein air 10 years ago, got caught in my most recent madness. It is a delightful little painting about youth and aging. The two boys are working hard building their castles while rising up behind them ancient rocks watch over the young architects. I was inspired by the contrast and painted a rather nice sketch. Now in my current frenzy I couldn't resist reworking it. Off came the varnish. I brought more sunlight to the rocks, more wind and clouds and atmosphere, the ocean now moves forward and will soon threaten to wash the sand castles away. I thought I was making a few subtle adjustments but within an hour or two the whole painting had changed. The story now has more drama. Then I looked around the studio to see who the next victim might be.....