the only acceptable circle painting i have ever been able to achieve



I would like to start off this post by saying that I hate painting on circles. Seriously. Circles are just awful. Someone bought me a circular canvas about, oh, six or seven years ago now, and except for the layers of erased charcoal smudges, it's still blank.

Circles are stupid.

They just are. I have no issue with ovals, and none with squares or rectangles. I can create a composition on any of those shapes just fine, but not circles. Everything magically looks cheesy on a circle. If it's a regular composition, like a portrait or a scene, you think, okay, but why is it on a circle? Why not on some rectangular shape? How is the circle relevant to the image? Or, worse, people try to get clever with circles and paint things like planets or celestial vistas or something and they always turn out just embarrassingly trite. I've seen some abstract work turn out successfully on circles, but I'm not an abstract painter. And meanwhile, I have this 18-inch circular canvas kicking around and I kind of just want it to go away.

I think the only time a circular composition is justifiable is when the circle on which one is painting is an object, rather than merely a canvas. This, for example, is the sawn-off base of an old Yule tree that I found in the yard. It's small size (about 3 inches in diameter--yes, I have little hands) and its nature as being a slice of tree trunk saves it from Circle Doom. If this was on a larger canvas, it would be kind of a fail. I was thinking of doing more of these, since we have some ancient firewood in the basement that I could cut up. But that means using the beastly circular saw (irony!) and I never really feel like doing that. Yet another reason why having a band saw would make my life easier.

So this is the Bird Girl. I was thinking of screwing a hook into the top (it's about half and inch thick) and making her into some kind of ornament, but for right now she lives on the kitchen table.