Eves at the Forum, 2016, acrylic on canvas, 250 x 150 cm
I started this painting in late July, and until I finished it two days ago, it had been driving me mad. For the longest time I kept denying that the painting felt wrong, that I even hated it. I put it away for weeks, in avoidance and resentment for the subjects it portrayed. It’s the worst feeling ever, painting-wise. When I brought it back out and looked at it hard and strong-and admitted that some of the faces had to go-I got both a feeling of relief and an overwhelming sense that there was a lot of work to be done. And so many problems to solve. I worked so long on this painting that not only did I pose once with it for Instagram, not twice, but four times! We did end things on good terms and all is fantastic in the world again.
The first time they and I posed together for Instagram. The composition of this painting bothered me from day one.
But I thought: let me give it a chance.
I added the arms and it bothered me even more. The Eves weren’t evenly distributed.
I got rid of some clutter and still no.
Yet, I kept it the way it was.
Got rid of the blue. There was something amiss. It just seemed to me as if it were a yearbook photograph of some high school girlfriends.
I decided to rearrange everything. You know how hard that is to do? It’s much worse than starting all over.
Distractions abounded. I spelled Fareed Abdal’s name wrong. Can’t believe I did that since a pet peeve of mine is people misspelling my name.
Inspired by my previous painting, Eve to Eve, I decided to get rid of the necks and arms.
I blocked out more clutter with green.
Something was missing.
IG photo number three.
I added necks.
My sister liked the green I used to block the margins. She said it reminded her of this painting she had done of one of my plants. So I kept some green in there for her.
IG photo number two. In its original incarnation, the painting seemed to work better with me in it. I think I needed one more Eve right where I’m sitting here.
Their hands go well with mine.
This picture makes me laugh now but it couldn’t gone terribly awry. I posted it on IG stories but wasn’t happy with the fact the bottom of the painting was not parallel to the rug. So, stupid me, I tried adjusting it while still lying down on my back (so arms over my head). All of a sudden I looked up and saw the painting falling down towards me. At the same time I saw, in its path, a ladder and a chair (this all happened in seconds). Somehow I managed to catch the frame part of the canvas with my feet in the most unladylike way imaginable.
Lastly, I couldn’t resist taking this panoramic shot of my home. This is what happens when I’m done with a painting, particularly a very taxing one: I get a renewed burst of energy for life!