When is a painting finished?

When is a painting finished? This simple question, which is part of a painter's internal dialogue, remains critical to the success of a work. And, it will be answered differently by each artist. I've mentioned previously that some works take living with before the idea of 'completion' is determined. A sense of nothing more being gained by working on the piece. Whenever I reach a place where I begin to just fill in space is a big hint that I've come to a critical point of decision. It might mean the painting is done or, that it needs a radical re-working. Fiddling with detail usually means that I've come to the end of a journey. I certainly look for an overall sense of connection in my work where each part of the image 'binds' together in creative tension. A sense of vitality too that overworking can destroy. One thing is clear–the question is one of the most testing to answer.

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