Work in progress
Who gets to say when a painting is truly finished? The artist, of course, as long as he/she hasn't sold it. In the case of "Ensenada Fisherman" (left above) it took about two years to complete. I was not totally satisfied with the painting when I first "finished" it; it has never been shown in an exhibition. It sat around, patiently waiting for my renewed interest and attention. Then, this year, the opportunity to participate in an exhibition with a theme of environmental awareness came up. I wanted to submit this work, but first needed to make some improvements. First I added the small mangroves and Black Skimmers in the distance. I darkened the water in the foreground, raised the rear of the boat to align more properly with the horizon, worked on shading of the net in the boat to better match the angle of the sun on the boatman, and reworked the anatomy of the skimmers in the foreground. I also lightened the flying birds to make them appear further away. Where before they appeared to be floating in nothingness, now the background additions anchor the boat and fisherman and provide depth to the scene. The message of this painting is that we need to fish (and by extension farm) on a small scale, in ways that do not disrupt the environment and ecosystems. I have renamed the work "Coexistence".