I haven't written a blog post in a LONG while, but have recently been inspired by Sharon Britton's wonderful writing about her paintings. So, I've been back in the studio for about a month now, thanks to having a babysitter twice a week. No it wasn't easy to leave Nolan, my 4 month old, but it's getting easier. It's been an interesting experience. On my first day back, I knew I needed to make sure I had a plan for my few precious hours, so why not finish that painting that I had been working on since 2009? Yes, it's been that long. The photograph on the left is the inspiration for the painting. It was taken with my digital camera used as a pinhole. I fell in love with pinhole photography when I used to teach photography in public school, and love it still. It's a bit much to explain, but for those of you interested in that topic, I can lead you the wiki here. Anyways, as I mentioned I had been working on this 5'x3.5' canvas for a WHILE. It was actually the thing I was most concerned about keeping safe in the back of the U-Haul truck- precariously balanced on my heap of stuff- on my move down to Tampa from NYC two years ago.
I entered the studio and looked at the photo- and looked at the painting. I had been trying to really capture this moving wave by following the photo as closely as possible. Trying to enlarge the photo paint to over 10 times it's size was daunting, and I knew that what I really wanted to do was capture it's spirit of movement. So, I ditched the photo and started to dance with the paint. I got into the feeling of the swirling, whirling motion and the rolling forward of the water. The paint was flowing, the painting was happening, the dance was dancing, and then it was done.
I have to say that while I post it here on this computer, I actually like the photo more. But, the painting has a life that doesn't seem to come through in the photo. It is different. One is paint, the other a photo in it's own right. The painting actually has so much more depth than the photo through all of the layers of paint, and the sheer size of it makes it commanding. The work will be on exhibit locally, more details later. Regardless, it feels good to paint again.