Friday, January 3, 2014

Number Second of the 30/30 Painting a Day Challenge

SO, here is my second attempt at a painting in one day.  Unlike yesterday's post, this one brought me many problems to solve, all within that small time zone and the limited palette of not the best colours to use.  I am a bit of a miser, so when I have a palette with blobs of oil liquid gold still freshly glistening, I have to use it.  Just like the left overs, I have to eat them, can't let them go to waste.  I started with a nice new canvas with good tooth.  Some may not know what I mean by that, some may absolutely agree, a fresh new canvas with a good tooth makes the brush sing, quite magical.  I got lost in that symphony of sound, so much so I probably could have done ten paintings in the time I took, dancing in the tooth of sound, must be a song I could write there.

Magic it was in sound, magic in representing my idea, uh, well, not the best.  My landscape works are thick, and built up in layers, and glazed and layered, and layered, so much so they often end up looking like a craft more than a painting, well, not really, but I have been told of the stained glass look they have, as if there is a light behind them, so they tell me.  To try and capture that look is impossible to do in one day.  That's okay, this is an exercise.  I don't go to choir rehearsal or singing lesson thinking THAT'S the big shooo, no, not at all.  So not every time I put brush to tooth should I feel this is MY BEST, impossible.  I might look the next day and think..."ugh, why am I doing this?/"  or "Hey, that's not a bad start, I can make a good painting out of that" or " I wonder what we're having for dinner tonight" or something like that.

No, not the best palette to use, but I learned from that.  I learned how to mix so few colours without using any white, the balance of pushing around the pigments in turps to create tonal values. As I gaze upon this photo I think how much better it looks in real life, honest it does, my paintings are not photogenic, just like me.  I spent a lot of today trying to recreate a moment at Goldstream Park in the fall, using a very busy chaotic photo full of wild bushes that gave no clue how I should compose it.  My focus was the old growth and fallen tree that is giving new life to others.  It's a fascinating journey when in the woods, so much is reborn from the fallen and dead, quite a marvelous wonder to marvel at as we wander through God's ethereal playgrounds.

This challenge is much more than just palette choices and subject matter, I realize that now.  This is about us as artists, what makes us artists, how we communicate with viewers, with each other, with life.  If I hadn't already written this essay, I'd elaborate on that, but I can't, it's only one philosophical ramble a day, I'll save it for next time.

Onward to Number Three.......



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