What Was Needed

Spring Bluff Marsh


Ahh, January.  I love the clean crispness of January.  I clean out my studio and begin again, looking through my stash of photos and sketches for my next project.  Fresh new canvases thrill me to my fingertips, but I don’t hesitate to paint out a painting from last year that didn’t ever quite gel.  Sometimes, though, they are sort of in between.  Not bad enough to paint out, yet something is missing… This weekend when I was flipping through old photos an old snag caught my attention.  Ah-HAH!  That’s what was missing in my Spring Bluff Marsh~ a big ole gnarly tree.  So I scooped up some colors and let them mush together in the shape of a snag.  Now I’m happy.

Life is like that, isn’t it?  Sometimes the thing that is missing is really already there, you just aren’t seeing it.  It is so satisfying when the needful thing clicks into place.


  1. Reply

    It is a beautiful painting, Melissa. Perhaps you could add a bird or two ;-)) I love the Purple Irises in the foreground. Its a very tranquil scene and better for the snag.

  2. Reply

    I have a thing for snags and am very happy to see this one in your lovely colorful marsh, Melissa. I think it is quite a nice advantage to have the ability to add and subtract elements from an artwork. It’s also good to sometimes lay a piece to the side for a while when one hits a spot that requires some thought. It’s much the same when processing an image.

    • Reply

      I have a thing for snags, too 🙂 Just love them. I never thought about it, but it makes sense that sometimes you have to set aside an image for thought, too.

  3. Reply

    I agree with Steve. A fresh view is such a big help sometimes. It works for painting, photography, quilting, and writing. Basically all creative endeavors.

    We had guests over this evening. I was pleased to show them a special painting on our wall.

    • Reply

      Thanks Michael! Does this happen for you as well? I love the idea of your art spirit village. A space for only positive thoughts and energy… here comes some 🙂

  4. Reply

    Isn’t it funny, that in some places, like a sweater, a snag if a flaw, while in other places, it’s a lovely highlight! We talk about running into a snag as an impediment, and river pilots or fishermen dread snags. But here? It works beautifully.

    Sometimes, when I find a piece just isn’t working, but I dearly love a portion of it, I’ll do the same thing. I’ll keep what I like, and let the rest go. Eventually, what I’ve kept may find a home elsewhere. It may take a good bit of time, but that’s one reason I skim through all of my draft files and bookmarks every three months or so — just to refresh myself about what’s there, waiting to be used.

    • Reply

      It’s fun, really, isn’t it? It has taken me 50 years to realize that life is a game, not something to get all anxious about but now I’m here I am enjoying it immensely. Mostly.
      Thank you for commenting~I’m glad you like the painting 🙂

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