making simple paintings is a challenge

I want to have nothing in my paintings that distracts from the feeling I want to create. Shapes are few and simple, colour has gone unless it adds to my intent. it is a real challenge and I have a long way to go. I have learnt a lot and I hope some of my experiences summarised below may be of interest to fellow artists and I would love to hear your comments (please add them via the box at the end of the post)...

I think taking out everything that is unnecessary makes what you leave in unmissable and I reckon it really worked in the example below.

colour and texture painting Menin Road

Plenty of colour in this one with texture and lost and found edges. A nice painting but what is the message? I think it gets lost. What do you think?

Menin Road WW1 painting

This one is also pleasing to the eye. Lots of blended colour, texture and it creates a dreamlike mysterious feeling. But I wanted unmissable.

world war one painting Menin Road

Now all the colour is removed and it appears less carefully done, but for me the message is more powerful maybe unmissable - what do you think?

I have tried and tried to get this painting to say what I want it to say, here are two attempts   >>>

cool blues painting

It does not take long to draw out the shapes but it is taking me forever to get the message I want. I know it is to do with colour reactions but boy it's hard. Help me Rothko! 

painting in cool blues

Another attempt with slightly different colours and an extra shape, nope not got it yet.

But this one worked for me   >>>

world war one trench painting

I love this painting. has it got the message I wanted? No, but I still love it. Nice to have a "failure" you love 🙂 

Trench war painting

Everything is removed. It is simple and the message is clear. This one I am happy with.

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