Enough Already...

One of the challenges of making a layered print is that you don't always know when to stop. Sometimes you just need someone to snatch the brush or pen out of your hand and say, "enough already!"

Such was the case with a print I tried a few months ago. Originally this was going to be the third installment of the "Monotypes and Marbling" series I was writing about on here, but I wasn't happy with the finished print and put it away in a box instead.

I started out with the monotype I did of the old silo. I didn't do anything else with this print, so it still looks like this:

While there was still ink on the plate, however, I printed its ghost, with the intention of doing more work with it.


So I added a couple of monotypes and did some marbling, although I don't remember in which order anymore. The marbling was subtle, so you can't discern it all that well in these images.

This is where, in my opinion, I should have stopped. I was imagining the silo in the distant future, when it was perhaps no longer standing and was only an impression on the memory of the town. I think I suggested that just fine here by using the faint ghost and covering it with warm, sunset-like colors. There's a part of me that always feels compelled to add details though, because I'm technically proficient at them and my viewers tend to like them, so I ended up drawing this:

I was imagining the silo underwater, as part of a coral reef, millions of years in the future. The result though, is just plain busy to me. It's fussy and distracting, and doesn't enhance the prints behind it at all. I didn't even bother to finish what I had started drawing, I was that unsatisfied with the result. In some ways I think this print foreshadows the color field sketches I've been doing lately, but before I'd learned to put the pen down and walk away. 

Or maybe not. After taking another look at this print, I decided to try and salvage it. Tune in next week to see what happened.