In “Abstract Aliases” – a mystery art thriller by Ritter Ames – Laurel Beacham, the art recovery expert protagonist has returned to London office and is quickly engulfed in strong whiffs of danger, intrigue, and – as always, in a good way – an ongoing yes/no maybe/could-be romantic involvement with a fellow art sleuth based, he says, with the British secret service 🙂
No wonder she’s glad for the distraction of work details; and it was the mention of the value of details PLUS the author’s wonderfully easy inclusion of first person POV (point of view) details that encouraged me to appreciate my own desire to nit-pick my own then work-in-progress pictured below.
Here’s the trigger passage, reprinted with permission of the author –
Quickening my steps, I detoured for a necessary stop on the way back to the office. The errand was to check on a restoration promised for an exhibit starting the next day. The address was nearby, and in less than ten minutes I was talking to the usually perky brunette who always made me think of a pixie.
”Another hour or so, Laurel,” the restorer, Nelly, promised. She worked from her second floor flat.
London’s second floor, so it was third floor for me. All those stairs.
I wished her a happy new year, and she responded in kind, though a bit distractedly — not at all the upbeat personality I usually encountered. She showed me the tapestry, pulling at her corkscrew curls, while pointing out the final section she wanted to spend more time on. “A tiny bit more refining is all, I promise. I want to do it right.”
The work already looked brilliant, but I didn’t argue. Her perfectionist tendencies were why I hired her. “Okay, great. Shall I come by on my way home?”
”I have an appointment later tonight, and I need to leave before five. Can you come back about four?” she asked. She continued running a hand nervously through her hair.
I’ve read the first book in Ritter’s series, so I can tell by the attention to suspense raising details, this is gonna be another hum-dinger, with moments of intense action, sudden tensions, and (of course) romance – laced with wonderfully evocative moments of art appreciation.
The frame-work of Ritter’s style and narrative is obviously all there, even stronger, in this newer work, yet it’s again the details giving me grounded pause, stopping me in my reading-tracks, often with a smile, and then driving me forward into the narrative again, that keep me reading and wanting more….
I think that’s my take-away for my own art.
Now it’s about my details, my creative work, added within an unusual (for me) abstract that had already pushed me to see a winged horse in the sky of colors in the first place.
But this still all begs the question – so what am “I” restoring?
I can only answer – my internal vision of the image as I’m discovering it, as I’m painting it….
And what better inspiration than an engulfing art mystery novel, where most – if not all, I don’t know yet – will come out right 🙂
Below are both an earlier version of “Winged Horse in the Sky” and the finished version – the earlier version notated where tiny changes were made.
For a full res view of the finished work, please visit – https://fineartamerica.com/featured/winged-horse-in-the-sky-felipe-adan-lerma.html
Not all my art progresses this way, in fact each has it’s distinct path within my mind and heart, but finding those little details, and enhancing their suggestive effect, does seem to be one of my favorite things to do (smiles).
* Please note, full res images are available on my FAA site *
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