Tuesday, October 16, 2018

“Watch the Waves So Far Away”, 36” x 24”, acrylic paint on canvas (abstract 12)

“Watch the Waves So Far Away”, 36” x 24”, acrylic paint on canvas. It’s been a little while since I posted an abstract, but I’m still keeping at one a week. This one is actually a redo of sorts, since I decided to paint over my last painting, “Travelers ...”. Sometimes it takes some getting away, to gain a little clarity, and when Kris and I returned from our short trip to DE, I felt like a lot of stress and weight was lifted. When I returned and saw that painting, as much as I liked the textures and sense of depth, it felt a bit confused and reminded me of the walking ball of stress I was, prior to the trip. There’s a lot of layers to this painting, as it was originally a landscape, before my first attempt at turning it into an abstract. As with most of the pieces from this series, the title is a reference to a song, this time by the band Slowdive, who made 2016 a little more tolerable by releasing a new album and touring, after a couple of decades out of the spotlight. 

Monday, September 24, 2018

some thoughts on the current abstract series of paintings

I thought it would be interesting to do a little photo montage of most of the abstract acrylic paintings I’ve been working on these past few months. What began as a happy accident, turned into a series, with the intention of completing one painting per week, for a year. It’s been an enjoyable challenge that has reignited a spark to paint, experiment and explore some avenues new to me, while attempting to keep things somewhat consistent and cohesive along the way. After spending a few years working on fairly detailed, realistic and technical drawings of things like animals and trees, I felt a strong urge to go a different route only hinted at in previous work. Due to the ambiguous nature of abstract and non representational paintings, I found this type of work to be just as difficult, satisfying and frustrating, for different reasons than that of detailed, realistic drawing. I’ll spend about two-to-three hours a night, four or five days a week on a piece. Sometimes a smaller work is as equally challenging as a larger painting. Unlike the Jackson Pollock cliche of the slap-dash technique, artist dancing freely around the canvas like a man possessed, my approach is very slow and deliberate, and would be incredibly boring to watch. If you were to witness some sped-up time lapse footage of me at work, you’d see a process that would appear to have no rhyme or reason, confusing even, unlike some of those videos by folks, where everything seems to fall into place in a few dozen graceful, magical brushstrokes. Some nights I’ll look at a piece and am absolutely convinced it’s finished, only to look at it the following day with the realization I’ve got a long way to go. I get a lot of inspiration from the music I listen to while working, and in addition to the sounds I hear, a song title, and in more rare cases, lyrical passages might influence the direction of a piece. Mostly I try to merge the limited knowledge and experience I have with painting, with a more intuitive approach, working from more of what’s going on inside than outside.