One of the challenges I face with painting is where to elaborate and where to conceal. Conversations of late with friends have often ended up with discussing ancient chinese art. The artists from those times had supreme command over the choices they made while either concealing certain elements or revealing others. When they revealed, they opened up the world; and when they concealed, they invited the viewer to open up the world!
As a graduate student, I remember spending a great deal of time looking at chinese paintings and japanese woodcuts. The high-point was an exhibition of original woodcut prints portraying Kabuki actors that was brought to the galleries of Chitrakala Parishath in Bangalore. Here's an image that triggered my memory bank.