Saturdays were made for leisure or at least for the pursuit of things not involving the stress or the daily grind of the work week (ie: hobbies, home projects, etc). Doesn't always work that way tho. Like I tell my kids, "work before pleasure". So the day started with fried egg sandwiches and housework. Well, at least that's out of the way for now.
I'd set the rest of this day aside for myself. I had a lot of Me stuff to take care of. Aside from some personal grooming events (read as Haircut and a decent shave) I promised myself, Universe willing, that I'd get a start on taking pics for the upcoming Art Festival Mural project. I've spent the last couple of hours walking around downtown looking for good shots. I need something that definitively says "Des Moines". I'm working with some constraints so I'm looking for compositions that hold up well in a long, horizontal format. Size not necessarily withstanding, the painting will need to be produced in a 5:2 ratio. Plus the composition needs to be, for lack of a better word, busy. People will be painting small sections of the final piece and I can't imagine that there are that many people out there that would want to paint an all blue square for example. It needs variety. Ultimately I'll need to take more than a little creative license with the image to make sure the instances of that are as few as possible. I plan to go back out around sunset and again once it's dark. Thankfully the weather's working with me. It's a great day. Calm, relatively warm (damned near 50! woohoo!), and sunny. I could personally go for a few more clouds... for variety's sake, but they can always be brought in from other, later shots. Not to mention I've got a stash of DSM pics going back nearly 5yrs.
I've also managed to make some more progress on my latest NYC piece. I'm wanting to make this piece a little less "slick" than some of my more recent work. A conversation I had last night confirmed my own feelings that, although it's not as bad as stuff I'd produced a couple of years ago, my paintings are feeling a bit overworked. Funny, the person who made the comment was quite apologetic about it, but in truth he merely said what I'd already been thinking. The wet streets, long shadows, and bright lights I think will lend themselves to a looser approach. I'm seeing areas of unpainted canvas and looser brushwork. I've been trying to stick to my mural-sized brushes for this (3-4"). I'm thinking there'll be time for some more work on it later tonight.
That same discussion brought up another point that I'd been kicking around. Many times after seeing a web-posting of one of my pieces people will comment on how much they look like photographs. This is a little disappointing to me because in person they don't look like that at all. The brushwork tends to be loose and energetic. At least, that is, when I don't overdo it. I'm thinking I need to incorporate some sort of zoom mechanism into the site. If you know of anything that would help with that please let me know.
Sunset's coming in an hour or so. Time to start thinking about where I want to be when that happens.