Saturday, 20 October 2012

How long does it take...?

"Sunset over the Humber Estuary"
iPad painting
by Glenn Marshall

Every painter who has ever lived will have been asked the question - "How long did it take you to do that?"
It's a strange question, as if the length of time taken is somehow related to the validity of the painting. Some paintings actually do 'flow' and take very little time while others have to be worked on for a long time.
One of the best answers to the question came from a fellow artist and good friend - Rob Gobel.
A group of us were demonstrating our techniques at an exhibition we were involved with.
Rob works in mixed media and tends to start many, many paintings outdoors and sometimes.... even finishes them if he gets round to it!
The  piece he was working on was begun several years earlier but this particular morning he had been working away for a couple of hours developing his painting.
A passerby stopped and watched him for a while.."How long did it take you to paint this?" he eventually asked.
Without missing a beat Rob, replied so casually, "Oh three years and a couple of hours." Brilliant!
So when you are asked the question again, remember Rob's reply. You might also want to bear in mind a quote from the great James Whistler  -
"An artist is not paid for his labour but for his vision."

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