"Llamas", 16x20, oil on linen
Painting a subject that is of interest to you personally is important and most fun, but could have the consequence of you owning that work for some time. Unfortunately, I do own a few more of these types of paintings than I would like…I’m sure it is a universal thing with most artists. I personally dislike the idea of only making paintings that will always be an easier sell, or painting only things that you think are safe, or might have a greater chance to sell in the Galleries. I know it is a fact that much of this is subject driven….and we all must make a living, but I do admire artists who do not always play it safe when it comes to subject matter. I have had this discussion many times with different people about what sells and what will not sell, etc. I would hope that there is a buyer for each painting somewhere. The problem is sometimes that buyers may never see a particular painting….so, getting those folks in front of said paintings is the other part of the equation….subject for a future blog post!
I can only speak for myself, but I paint things that sometimes deep down, I know while I’m painting them that this is not going to be an easy sell…..or there may be fewer opportunities to move this painting. My wife Marilyn is always a pretty good judge of this, and is never reluctant to advise me regarding this. In my mind, I still want to paint certain things, even though they are difficult to market. Thankfully, some of the things I paint are well received, but the ones that are sometimes most fun to paint are the ones that are difficult to find a home for….and sometimes paintings just have to be painted without any consideration of sales. Generally, these are the paintings that are well received by other artists. If I had no outlets for the paintings I produce, I would still continue to paint them. I suppose it would then be considered more of a passionate hobby…I guess.
The painting above, Llamas, 16x20, oil on linen, is a good example of this. I painted this a few years ago…2000, I believe. We took a trip to upstate New York to visit my daughter and her family. There was this farm that had Lamas on it….first time for me seeing a Lama in the flesh. I thought they were interesting animals, so I painted them. I framed the painting and one of the galleries that were representing me at the time took it and had it for some time. It was later returned to me and I took it out of the frame, and stuck it in storage. Recently, while arranging and culling out old stuff, I came across it…..hence the motivation for this post. What struck me about the painting was how little difference there seemed to be in this painting, compared to some of the paintings I am presently doing. I probably would have approached this pretty much the same way I did thirteen years ago. Painting proficiency is hopefully somewhat evolved, but basically it is not that different.
"Daydreams and Smoked Mullet", 22x28 oil on linen
“Daydreams and Smoked Mullet” is another painting that fits this category. I have yet to show this to any gallery….it’s been hanging around the studio unframed for some time. I suspect that it will not be an easy one to get out of the studio. This might be one that I end up owning. Lucky me!
Until next time, thank you for listening to my Cajun Ramblings.