Friday, March 11, 2011

But... what's in a title?

Original oil painting 28x22"
by Susan Roux

This is the final painting I completed while away on my artists retreat. A week has passed since my return and that amazing carefree feeling slips away a bit more each day. Soon I suspect it will be but a memory. As I talk to the other artists who shared this wonderful experience with me, transition back to normal has not been easy.

I hesitated painting this red-skirted female after the thrashing Scarlet the tartlet gave me. Somehow my fears stepped aside because something about her pose sucked me in anyway. I approached her differently. Being keenly aware of the power of red this time around, I began by instantly adding lots of it in my background. I even kept her skin quite red to balance her skirt. Since the focus is directly on her red bottom, the color aided pulling the eye. She actually fell into place easier than I expected. I wonder, did being in the presence of all those other artists give me the nerve to attempt another red skirt? After the last, I didn't think I'd ever paint another one.

What do you think of the title? Is But... too severe? I had quite a few other titles come to mind, but somehow But... stuck. One of my other potential titles was Dry Skirt. Not nearly as catchy. I feel like I need to explain myself. (I'd go swimming) But... (I still have my clothes on). Do you think a potential buyer would cancel the sale because of a title? I wouldn't want to offend anyone. Perhaps they'd see the title as cute and sassy as my sweet model is? I'd love your opinion on this.

Do you have subjects or colors you shy away from because of past difficulties they've given you? It can feel good to face your fear head-on and keep in control to the end. It's very empowering. Why not give it a try?

And I don't want any But's for excuses...


  1. Susan! This is great! Sometimes you have to get a bit 'cheeky' testing the waters.
    This painting will find a good home for what it is, a wonderful piece of art!

  2. Susan I would never pass on a piece of artwork I'd like to buy due to the title.

    I think it is a splendid painting and your title is just fine.

  3. I have loved all of these beach women. I shy away from bold reds. Not sure why. I've found success w/ them when I broaden my palette from my usual 2 reds.

  4. Love the painting and my thought is the title is interactive, causing the viewer to add their own thoughts to "But . . ."

  5. A very nice painting! I read your experience with 'scarlet' found a way to control the red :)

  6. Wonderful painting and she came out great. I think the name's cool. I think anything that causes people to question what the title might mean is a good thing. Love it!

  7. Pour faire fort, je dirais "sensualité provocante"... ou "la Fanny".
    Je ne pense pas qu'un titre pourrait empêcher l'achat d'une toile... Te voilà à la tête d'un beau harem ma chère Susan avec ces belles filles sexy...
    gros bisous

  8. This painting is so cute. And it's so refreshing !

  9. Hello Susan,
    Beautiful post!

  10. The title,"But" is absolutely right, for it is about her beautiful, playful, sexy but. Another amazing painting.

  11. I love the painting and yes I like the title and would I worry about offending? The title is much about what you as the artist was thinking and feeling at the time. You know something the more I think about the more I like the title Butt.

  12. I love the double entendre of the title and it does appear that her is the focus. This is the first one of this series that lets us see a bit more of her personality. This is the first that gives her a flirty side. Another lovely lovely piece, Susan.

  13. Vos peintures sont toujours magnifiques et j'avoue être sublimée du travail de vos couleurs, c'est un ravissement !


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