by cheri sabraw
I did not win a ribbon.
I did not sell either of my two paintings.
However, one woman, perhaps in her early 80’s, chased me down the hall, as I began to load my art back into my car at closing time.
“Are you the artist who painted that enormous bison on a large canvas?”
“Yes, I am,” I replied.
“Well, I just have to tell you that my brother is an oil painter and is showing his work here too. I have spent a lot of time in art galleries. Last night, I walked by your painting at least five times and each time, I choked up with emotion,” and as she told me this story, she showed me her goosebumps today, there, as we stood back in front of “At Rest.”
“Thank you,” I replied. ” Not only have you made my day, but also you have reaffirmed for me what separates some paintings or sculptures from others. Thank you for taking the time to remind me that often, it is the emotional experience we have that draws us to a work of art.
Another woman asked me if I could paint a Paso Fino horse, which would remind her of her father and her early life Puerto Rico. I told her I could do that and she took my card.
The judge of the show, during the critique, spent most of her time indicating why paintings “worked” for her.
“They must be stand-outs, unusual paintings that catch the judge’s eye, something different, a painting that adheres to the Rule of Thirds, the Rule of Odds, and something she called rhythm. ”
She criticized perfectly lovely pastel paintings because the focal point was just below the center of the painting or had a walkway that exited to the lower left of the canvas.
One of the winners in the oil painting category told me that composition was everything and while I agree to a point, I would add that sentimentality, pure joy or wonder, nostalgia and the like do more to sell paintings than all the Rules of Thirds and Odds in the world.
I have started a new blog so that I have a place for my thoughts about painting, art, and the like. You can visit at cheriblocksabrawfineart.wordpress.com.
Your thoughts are always welcome.