Aug 27, 2015

Do You Have Tension in the Workplace?


A little Tension can be good.
I don't mean an all out battle, although there are plenty of those in the studio.  You know, you start the picture feeling excited and happy with great plans then suddenly everything changes.  The values don't work, colours fall apart and what happened to that great composition?  Those battles are always there.

But Tension is a different thing!

It is more a sense of suspense. The feeling of being stretched or straining against something. A sense of movement and excitement.
Tension is sometime you need!

Check out the swans enjoying a bit of sun and preening themselves.  Drying off from the rain.  Swans are about purity, grace and beauty.  There is a sense of calmness to them.  A picture of swans becomes a relaxing massage: soothing, soft and silky. As a Wildlife Artists, designing compositions with animals can be a challenge.  Often you can only catch the animals when they are relaxing, grazing or sleeping.  Not facing death defying challenges.  The results can end up being a nice picture but lacking that sense of excitement.  That tension.

On the River - detail 

So . . . 
Bring on the tension!

On the River - Watercolour - 9 x 15

Adding the stump, brings on the excitement.  Your eye still runs over to the swans. Yes, they do make interesting shapes and don't you love their colours.  Their silhouette are very powerful with the water but wait,  What is that beside them? Your eye is drawn to the darken roots of the tree they are standing on.  It has a good look around the roots but then takes a slide. The light on the trunk catches the eye and slides it s along the trunk and back to the swans. The circle begins again. Makes for quite a lot of visual tension. 

I saw this pair of Trumpeter Swans on one of my trips last fall to Riefel Bird Sanctuary.  It was a cloudy, dreary wet day.  ( Okay, I did push the values a bit to bring on the sun. But really, they had had enough rain and I felt they needed to feel the warm sun.)  They had been feeding in the marsh and were a bit muddy as well.  Trumpeter Swans are one of our winter visitors, stopping here to rest on their migratory trip.  Some will even stay all winter when we have a mild one. 

So when next you are in the studio: 
Fight your battles but get some tension in your pictures. 

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Have a good day, 


Brenda Hill CDM said...

Swans are so majestic, you've captured the perfect pose and I love the colours!

Wendy Mould AFCA said...

Thanks Brenda. I agree, there is something about seeing swans in the wild that makes it feel like a special moment.

Marney Smithies said...

Wonderful painting & explanation. Very inspiring. Have fun at the show in New West, hopefully i can drop by.

Wendy Mould AFCA said...

Glad to hear I have inspired you. It is always a challenge to keep those eyes entertained and moving around the picture.