I've noticed something about my SA work which I'd like to improve upon. (I should preface this by saying I almost always strive for abstraction).
I'm a strong believer in the philosophy of allowing/encouraging accidents and exploration which lead to unimagined visual directions. I've never read a better description of this philosophy than how Jean Detheux described it in his DMN interview:
In fact running across this interview was a trip, because I had not run across any kind of intellectual foundation for what I was doing in SA, and this is the closest to my thinking that I've seen.
And as luck would have it, most of the time this approach works extremely well for me, at least at the micro (100% onscreen) and full-size (i.e.. viewed as you would in a gallery setting) scales. When I say it "works out", I mean I'm super-pleased with the textures, colors, shapes and look. However the "look" at the macro level often leaves me wishing for more. By "macro" scale I mean when you step back from it several steps, or when the artwork is reduced down to an icon size. My profile icon is a good example of what I mean. You can see the original artwork that the icon was shrunk from at
Of course my profile piece is not 100% abstract as I wanted to leave a little smidgen of human form in it.
How I've tried to address this problem is by layering on some big bold strokes at the end (of getting the micro/full-size scales how I like them). That has not worked very well, but it could just be I'm not grokking macro composition (actually in my profile icon artwork I didn't try this step.) Or maybe the SA brush is seeking some texture in the source image which is not a good pattern for the macro composition.
To the best of my knowledge, this problem can be avoided by using the approach of designing a composition before starting the first paintbrush stroke. Plenty of artists whose abstract art appeals to me do this, but some use the un-planned approach too.
However I'd be interested if anyone else has this problem when creating abstract art, and what you do about it, if anything.