Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Reaching for the Off Switch

Experimentation continued both yesterday and today. Adding colors and layers to the work from Monday filled most of the day yesterday along with a few new beginnings, like the painted piece started above.

I went to bed tired last night but couldn't fall asleep, then woke up at 3 AM with new ideas pulling open my eyelids. If you've ever woken up in the middle of the night with ideas singing a hallelujiah chorus in your brain and the harder you try to go back to sleep, the louder they sing, you'll join me in wishing you could have a switch hardwired into your brain that you could flick on and off.

This piece has improved since Monday. The addition of the darker grays in the lower portion, the strong contrasts between values and hard and soft edges and the silk screened rows of vertical letters add a lot of interest and vitality. I'll try stitching on this surface next and see if that completes it successfully.

Today I worked first on bolder lines with a variety of applicators and paints that varied in viscosity. Some of the "aliveness" I'm desiring is starting to emerge in this sample. Larger lines with bigger tools may be the next step with this practice.

After a few of these pieces, I decided to work from a reference. I've got a series of photographs taken of the walls of an underpass near my studio. I love them. Here's one of the original images and my progress on fleshing out the interesting patterns of cracks and discolorations on the concrete walls. I am really having fun with this one and it's the closest to representational work I've done -- surprise, I like it!

This is a piece of dyed fabric left over from another project. The golden yellow seems to be a good ground for layering grays, blacks, rusts, tans and whites over.

The bottom area in progress, still wet but very pleasing to my eye-- will see it dry when I return on Monday and then continue.

Tomorrow we will head off for a weekend in the Thousand Islands, so my overloaded brain will get a break..until I return to this piece and can enjoy fleshing out more fissures, cracks and contrasts on its surface! This is another piece that I would like to paint on a LARGE scale.

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