OK. I’m back from vacation and it is time to start showing some art!
To sum up the last few months, I would say I have gone from more traditional still life painting to exploring abstract painting.
I tried another artists technique which was a wonderful learning experience, but I knew that particular style was not my own. I unveiled these trial paintings much to my chagrin and then started 5 new paintings taking what I learned and now trying to make it a little bit more of my own.
So here is painting #1 of 5. I am calling it Ethereal.
Above is the first layer of the painting.
It is a 24×30″ acrylic painting on 300lb cold press paper and I drew on it with charcoal.
It wasn’t on purpose, but in this first layer, I began to see a cat or tiger appearing on the right. I totally didn’t want to go the cutesy route, so I added about 3-4 more layers trying to transform that feline into something else! I also used quite a bit of clear matte acrylic medium to try to make each of the layers translucent.
I tried to keep spinning the painting 360 degrees, to move quickly, not to get attached and to remember to make the painting experience as much fun as possible and in this way, I succeeded. I had a great time! Strange things began to take form. See if you can find them. There’s a dragon, floating eyeballs, a spinning torpedo, and tons of crosses. Do you see a tiger? You better not!
It was a strange phenomenon. As I began drawing crosses (and I’m not exactly sure why I was by the way), I felt a tinge of fear or guilt. I slowed down and explored that emotion and tried to figure out where and why it was present. I figured out it was due to my Irish Catholic upbringing. Just like the sacrilege of defacing our American flag, the cross is the same way to Christianity. It’s sacred and you’re not allowed to use this icon unless you are praying to it.
So yes, this is one belief, but another is that a cross is also two perpendicular lines that intersect. When it comes down to it, it’s two lines. Why should I feel guilty about drawing two lines? I am allowed to make any marks that come to me and I can disassociate these marks with whatever pre-inherited notion that has been unwillingly attributed right? Wow. That I can say, felt a little bit like FREEDOM, freedom from societal preconceptions… Woo Hoo! Now feeling mentally liberated, I started making tons of crosses, in black and in white and I loved letting go of the idea that I might go to hell for doing so!
As the crosses began to radiate out from the floating orbs in the painting, the crosses did take on some meaning for me.
I believe in life after death and I believe our souls are energy that cannot be created or destroyed. The way the crosses float in the painting, makes me feel like they are souls around me floating through dimensionless matter. This in turn reflects the rest of the painting; objects floating in dimensionless matter. To be ethereal.
It’s a good-size painting and the color vibrates right off the paper.
I am truly happy with my work.
Wait… did you hear me? …let’s just take a moment, do you realize I just said I have no complaints?
That’s a big deal. Artist contentment…
…I must be getting somewhere!