I am an artist, not a writer. My Intent is not to educate, enlighten or inspire but rather to clarify my motivations to myself. I find that when I write down the thoughts and reasons that I take certain paths, it helps me to avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over again. Let's face it, authentic work evolves through a series of mistakes, lessons learned and options eliminated.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Third version after input from blog

“Prolapse” 38”x 31”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

I posted a second version of this piece on my blog and Mary Zeran confirmed my suspicions that I had taken it too far. Thanks Mary. I liked my first version enough to post it but it started to feel shallow after awhile. So, fools rush in, I over did it to the point that, as Mary pointed out, the simplicity of the earlier version was lost. Working in cement presents problems when you try to work back into a piece but at this point I had nothing to lose. With the help of a metal scraper and an electric grinder, I tore into the surface removing layers and pigment. After looking at the result, I decided to rotate the art into a vertical position. I agree with Mary that I'm loving the virtual critique aspect of my blog. That being said, is this third version an improvement over the second and even more important is it better than the first?


  1. William, turning Prolapse on its side has added energy/conflict. I wish I could feel it. I imagine that touching the surface would add another dimension to your work.

  2. Thanks Carole, one of the cool aspects of polished cement is it can be touched.

  3. YES! Much better (to me) and certainly stronger than the first. I love your remark about a work feeling shallow. I am really acquainted with that issue more often than I like to admit. I think when we have that feeling, it is good to take note and then take a chance. I'm glad you pushed this piece further. There are some really beautiful moments in it that weren't in it before. At least for me. Mystery in fact in how did you do that. There is a lot more subtleness. And I always find it interesting to rotate a composition. So here my question for you. Is it done?

  4. Yes Mary, it's done! The problem I had with the first version is it came to easy. I hate it when my work starts to look formulaic ( if that's a word). After working it through I feel that a lot of the subtly and mystery is in the evidence of the struggle. The act of reworking can go either way but if the chips fall into place, you can get results that could never have been planned, anticipated or for that matter, repeated. This begs the question, if this worked out so well, How do I duplicate the process for my next piece? Maybe that's the point,there is no formula. As I look back, most of my favorite pieces were almost scrapped at one point. They were all difficult births.

  5. The quote "difficult Births" is a keeper. And something to remember.

    And I know what you mean about things coming too easy. Sometimes for me that is okay and sometimes not....

    It is so true about reworking being a gamble but, then maybe the gamble is part of the excitement. And then the part about formula is very to the point too!

    Excellent conversation William!!!! I'm loving it!

  6. I wish to thank Mary, David, and Carole for weighing in on this piece. You are all partially responsible for it's positive outcome. Kudos!


Thank you for your comment, I appreciate your input.