J'accuse! Quite a Storm painting by Everglades artist Jo-Ann Sanborn
Acrylic on Canvas, "24x30"
A women came into my studio recently and spent some time looking at the paintings. "I've been looking at your work a long time," she told me, "I think you're getting repetitive."
Oh, the horror! While nearly ill with inner turmoil, I thanked her for her interest in my work. I told her that I painted almost every day and that I've been painting the Everglades landscape for seventeen years. There's not much out there besides water, sky, and palms. It's the shapes and their relationship to the sky and the changing light that interests me.
Yes, I told her, I occasionally revisit a spot. Still, each time there's a a fresh approach as I address my canvas. The light is different, or a view from a different angle to explore. Some palms clumps were old favorites, and I loved visiting to see how they were growing or had changed, or perhaps some little ones had come along.
I suggested that my compositions had improved, that my color palette had changed, and that my brushwork was maturing. She agreed this was true. I was glad for the discussion, because we each learned from it.
We went on to discuss how some artists have always painted in series, like Monet's haystack or lily pond series, (forgive the comparison, please!) and that I've done different subjects in my past and might again.
Yes, it's all Everglades. But for now each time I face the landscape and begin to paint it still feels new and exciting and challenging. When that ends, it's time to move on.