What a difference 8 months has made in my art! On September 27, 2009 - Day 48 - I attempted to paint a rose (top picture) and failed miserably. Tonight I painted another rose and the results are so much better. The funny thing is that from what I can remember I used the same technique to paint both roses.
I think the difference is that over time and with experience I have learned how to see the form and subtle value changes that I was unable to see before. My first rose painting was like a child's drawing. You could tell what it was suppose to be but it didn't look realistic because it lacked the correct value and form.
I used to think that if I wanted to get better at painting a certain subject that I would have to paint that subject over and over again. I realize now that the subject isn't as important as seeing value, contrast, shadow and highlights. By improving in those areas I was able to improve all my paintings.