Hello there! A mammoth month of bugs and sneezes gone, I'm back in almost full force. A curious thing has happened during that time, I've had the biggest urge to begin painting again and found the inspiration mounting up to saturation level. I began with this piece, Tree Woman. I had a huge desire to do something I've never done before, which is to include people. I've never been able to paint or draw figures, but somehow there was something different going on. It's as though something has changed within, and I have a deeper insight into the physical makeup of the human body, and it's language. Normally, I would begin a piece like this by tracing the image, but I found myself drawing her freehand. What's more, instead of studying photos like mad and making observations on skin tone and shadow, I winged the whole thing and painted what I felt. And I'm surprised at the outcome.
The thing I love about painting is the anticipation of the blank canvas....so many possibilities, and the only limits are within your own mind. It's a ticket for the imagination to run riot, jump, tumble and cast itself to as many shapes, colours and forms as it wishes. Like standing on the edge of an abyss, you need to jump to see what's in it, and it teaches you something valuable along the way.
I love the way paint smells, the way acrylics and gouache blend together and create warmth or cold, soft or hard and a multitude of hues and shadows. There are so many ways to apply it, brushes, sponges, or my favourite - the fingertip, for blending. The palette ends up looking like a work of art in the process, sometimes more impressive than the canvas, but there you go!
While I was recovering from a nasty bug, these ideas were forming, and while taking care of my husband who had it a week later, I had time to sketch them out and begin. One night, to try and stop coughing, I put on some relaxing sounds and did a relaxation technique. I decided to let my mind wander and not try to contain or direct my thoughts. Very interesting, indeed! The vision I experienced was so clear I have planned it as my next project, in four stages. If I'm happy with the result, I may well post!
What's important about the exercise is, the soothing effect of painting, the therapeutic nature of it. Sometimes speaking or writing isn't enough, there's something else that can't be communicated in any other way but imagery. I personally don't think it matters how it turns out, it's the fact that I've made an effort and perhaps learned a lesson or two. Maybe it helps me realise something as I'm creating the image of an idea, helps me get in tune with why it was in my head in the first place.
Whether the images you create are positive or negative, bright or dark in nature, it's an interesting thing to fish them out of your soul through the fibres of a brush and look at them. And it's also very surprising so find that other people recognise your feelings through images you think are relevant only to you.