In most paintings I do that are the least bit ambitious (i.e. they'll take me more than one session to complete), there is inevitably a moment when I stare at the unfinished piece and say to my self, "What on earth was I thinking?" This sense of dread is fairly paralysis-inducing, and I do well to spend more than 20 minutes at a stretch before I have to flee from the evidence of my own inadequacy as a painter.
I'm sort of to that point right now.
Although not huge, my current painting is the largest I've done in a long time, as well as being one of the more complex. While individual areas have some nice work, as a whole it feels rather clumsy and cobbled together.
What keeps me going is knowing most of my better paintings hit this low spot where I can't stand them. It's a necessary part of the journey.
Knowing this doesn't make it any easier though.
On a side note, I'm about ready to pronounce the previous painting finished. I hope to shoot a picture this week and post it.