Paintings out and home again

Two of my paintings got a bit of fresh air and exercise last week, going into a group exhibition. This one is run every couple of years as a fund raiser for the fistula clinic in Ethiopia, a very worthy cause, with all the commission going to support the work done there repairing women’s lives. One painting was sold, ‘Fecundity’, the first one shown below.

I read a post recently about the difficulty of choosing titles for artworks – they need to sum up what you feel about the work without necessarily influencing the thought processes of the viewer – I feel there has to be some room for them to add their own sense to the work. Some titles can be off-putting, you can realise the artist saw the work very differently from you. Jokey ones have their place (occasionally) but can demean the work, and long ones are just a nuisance, as I discovered years ago when I called a print ‘A Very Large Sunflower in Front of a Very Small Window’. Try putting that in the space allowed on an entry form! So now I favour very short, ideally one word titles, that try to sum up my feelings. There are times when I have changed the title of a work between one exhibition and another because the new one seemed more appropriate. The second painting below was originally called ‘Flamenco Heart’ but is now ‘The Bullfighter’. It just seemed more suitable.

Both are oil on canvas, 45 x 45 cm.

Fecundity_web bullfighter_web

Author: anna warren portfolio

I draw, I paint, I am a printmaker. Always searching for the interesting detail in the world around me.

25 thoughts

  1. Good to hear of the sale for the charity Anna . Just had a look to see what it was about still incredible to think in this day and age what some women have endure because of lack of proper care .
    I love your Bullfighter title . The swoosh and swirling folds of the Bullfighters cape very much comes to mind with this vivid painting !


  2. well your titles fit perfectly and what a great charity to be donating to – love the lushness of both pieces. Titles are a funny thing I often have a running title even before I start a piece – although it can often morph before the piece is finished and then again when it is finally completed!


    1. Thank you Veronica – I can tell you are someone who enjoys creating titles, yours are always evocative. I love words too, so sometimes spend quite a while thinking about the best ones to use. Starting from a title is an interesting thing to do too, but I can see there would have to be room for movement, but it can also streamline your thoughts.


  3. Lovely work Anna, I especially love ‘Fecundity’, it almost seems to writhe with pent up life. I also liked your theory on naming your work, an idea I may take to heart as I have not been very creative with my names for my work. Karen


  4. Luscious paintings. Names are always difficult for me. An artist just north of my home has some of the most intriguing names for her work (she is and illustrator & sculptor)
    You chose well with your names!


    1. Thanks Gale – its funny, isn’t it, sometimes titles are just THERE and other times they take ages to evolve. I just had a look at Lisa Kaser’s website – I love her titles! They are very whimsical, and go with the style of artwork. I like it very much.


  5. Great works Anna, and love that you are supporting this charity. It makes such a difference to the lives of these women. I agree, one word titles can be so evocative.


    1. Hello Ros, good to hear from you! Yes, its a very worthwhile charity – a bit like Fred Hollows in that these operations are not expensive, but are so far out of the reach of most of these women, but can transform their lives. Thanks for visiting!


  6. Wow – these remind me of Georgia O’Keefe! They are dripping with sensuality. Love the hot colours. They look fabulous but also dangerous – as if it wouldn’t take much for them to eat you. Both have a predatory feel about them. Look at me, Look at me (gulp)!!!


    1. Oh, I do like that! I love Georgia O’Keefe’s work so take that as a great compliment! They do have a raw animal feel, maybe the colours too. One of my painting friends felt the one I called the Bullfighter was like a heart and I didn’t disagree.


        1. A few years ago I was part of an exhibition with the friends I paint with and we called it Inner Beauty, as our reference material was cells and scans and internal organs. There was some very beautiful work produced. It all began with a painting I did that was inspired by a slice of lemon in a glass with light shining through – my friend, who also identified the heart – thought it looked like a uterus. Sounds hideous, but it really wasn’t!


  7. Beautiful! Shades of O’Keefe! (I would have been shocked I not scrolled through these comments and found no one who already made that association; but I stand by my words!)


    1. Thank you very much! As you will have seen in my reply above I do love Georgia O’Keefe’s work, but oddly I only discovered it after I started painting in this manner. There must have been something in the air!


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