There are times that paintings seem to flow from my brush rapidly, needing very little work to be "done." Others need work over time. It is rare that I give up and throw away a piece, but it is not unusual for an image to rest off to the side as I ponder what to do next.
Here is an example of work in progress. In the first image, you can see my first attempt to capture a view from an overlook on Morse Mountain looking toward Small Point in Maine. I tried to show a sense of distance, and to work within a narrow color palette of mostly greens and blues.
The water leads the viewer's eye in from the lower right corner up into the image diagonally. But there were several problems with the painting: the foreground did not give the sense of a drop-off that I wanted to show, the middle ground did not have enough detail to hold the viewer's interest, and there was not enough difference between lights and darks in the painting to provide nice contrast and sparkle.
I added detail to the middle and back, pushed some of the darks darker and lights lighter, and changed the foreground to give a better sense of distance. While there are still a few things to do to the painting, it has moved closer to reflecting the emotional response this place evoked in me.