The Artist’s Dilemma

I suspect that every artist, whether painter, illustrator or even musician, has faced the dilemma of knowing exactly when a work is complete. Sometimes you step back, look at the finished piece and you are happy – the story you want to tell is there. Other times, as with this painting, you just don’t feel it, put it aside and rework it again.

In the original version of this painting, titled “Storm over Buffalo Gap”, I wanted the viewer to see that both hunter and nature challenged the buffalo. Something about it bothered me though, it just didn’t quite tell the story I wanted.

Storm over Buffalo Gap Gale F. Trapp, 2013

Storm over Buffalo Gap
Gale F. Trapp, 2013

In the final version, titled “Ambush at Buffalo Gap” I brought the hunt closer to the viewer, making it a stronger focal point.

Ambush at Buffalo Gap Gale F. Trapp, 2013

Ambush at Buffalo Gap
Gale F. Trapp, 2013

The story captures the advantage of riding an experienced horse – the shot has hit its mark and the buffalo is going down. The scene is chaos, with buffalo heading in every direction, trying to avoid danger. One mistake by the horse or rider and it is the last hunt for both. Deadly fun for hunter, hunted and horse.

I’m not completely satisfied, but I’m moving on, for now.

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6 thoughts on “The Artist’s Dilemma

  1. Hi Gale,
    Thanks for stopping by my site.
    I can relate to your dilemma on the Storm over Buffalo Gap, sometimes when I go out on a photo shoot I just can’t seem to get the effect I was looking for, then I will go another day and there it is. I do enjoy your second edition though you brought home your focal point. Don’t be to frustrated with yourself it will pop for you unexpectedly.
    Wonderful work here at your site and I love learning about history. I just learned about a piece of interesting history in our area about a fur trader, surveyor and map making man called David Thompson, the ending of his career is a sad story. There is a documentary out on him I bet you would love to see it.
    Once again thanks for viewing my site.
    Jenny

  2. Pingback: A musician’s dilemma | The Daily Struggles Of A Musician

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