A blank canvas can intimidate. Brush poised, hesitant to unleash whatever is within. I have an idea. The colours are queued. The lines ready. The strategy this time is:
1. Start with the mid ground.
2. Arrange objects in the foreground.
3. Negative space last.
Tame the story. Bend it to your will. Then let it speak forever.
Friday’s travel tasks: buy paint, deliver 2 paintings, observe the lines of Belmore basin, revisit old haunts. This was where I used to live! While I was walking along the coastal path met up with an artist friend. Another series beckons… Wollongong lines and lighthouses loom on the canvas horizon. This sunny work day was most fruitful!
Inspiration will be not hampered by materials not ready.
The paints lie colour-grouped and brushes to attention.
Today the boards will be primed.
All of them.
White paint dry.
Ready to receive the next story. Layer. Upon layer.
Tunnels take us somewhere. Into the painting, into the mind. The mystery and promise of somewhere around the corner, or into the next life. Light and dark both equally held. Passing through shade, down a street, along the valley floor.
Tunnels are a portal into your own imagination. Do you see what I see?
Madonna is not the best singer in the world, but she has a unique style. She also has an IQ of 140, played drums and guitar in her first band and has published 10 books. Brad Pitt… not the best actor… but did you know he is a licensed pilot, has designed jewellery and became fluent in Greek in order to court Jennifer Aniston? (she has Greek ancestry apparently).
The goal is to keep working on our skills, refining, exploring, progressing, making better art. In the meantime, keep your life interesting. It’s good for you and it’s good for your art.
(The photo might need some explaining. This was an art park in Lithuania. While examining a sculpture I somehow got stuck inside it. Note to self: make sure that you are interesting for the right reasons)
Picasso went through 'periods'. The harlequin, the rose, the blue. I am going through a blue period. I just love the blues and the subjects that are blue. The loose brushstrokes and transparent parts. Rough scrubby parts. Synergised horizons. Resisting the urge to tighten up and pretty. I am energised and invigorated. Let free.
Edges tell a story. They are the bits that leak from the confines of the canvas. Bits of the story. The patchy parts – told and untold. They let you peek inside the composition and combinations of colour. Lumpy bumpy artist’s mark. Raw truth.
Japanese potters leave their finger marks when they dip the pots into the glaze. The artist’s mark. Waiting to be read.
I love my job! Today the to do list in Sydney was: see client about a commission, drop off painting, attend an exhibition, pack up a show. #lovebeingimmersedinart
One easy way I check to see if a painting is balanced is to do the 360 turnaround. Put the painting on its side – does it look right?
Repeat until the work has been seen from all sides, up and down, both sideways views… assess whether the painting makes sense and feels right. Look for the triangle (usually Isosceles) and balance the shapes and negative spaces. Sometimes the triangle will be a perfect Isosceles triangle with the base on the lower edge, other times inverted or sideways. It will be discreet. It will be there.
I once spoke with an artist. I got nothing, No connection. Nothing in common. I had less idea about that person than when we first met. I spoke with another artist. I got it! A sense of who they were. What they were passionate about, what they believed, how that poured itself out onto their canvas. What is your style, your brand? If they had to describe you, what would your audience say? What do people think of first when they think of you?
Richard Claremont - artist. A peek into my studio. How I think. How I paint. How I run my art business. Bite sized daily chunks of goodness. Just me talking aloud, really. Join me for a chat over a cuppa.
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