30x40x1.5, acrylic and multimedia on stretched canvas
This painting instantly became a favorite. It has mood and depth. I named it Abyss because it reminds me of being under water, and the filtered light you see when you look up. Trite? Maybe. Was the movie long ago enough? Anyway, while developing it I had worked on a really textured underpainting, and it just wasn't right. Then I remembered the Keep It Simple, Stupid (KISS) rule. So I schlepped it up on my easel and had at it with my puddles of paint and rags and eye droppers, and even a brush or two. The more I simplified, the more I liked it. The orange and yellow parts left of center are about all that's left of the underpainting. Finally, not sure if it felt done, I rotated it to see it with different sides up (this is hard for realism painters to do). Once I got to this orientation I had that sudden "Yes!" feeling. Don't you love that bubble of excitement that rises through your solar plexis? (Of course, it doesn't do as much for my husband, which is useful to keep in mind.)
I haven't been able to paint as much recently. As I mentioned, I'm preparing to apply to a gallery or two. I don't have a lot of abstracts yet, but the number is growing. I've also been working on a web site; it will have a subset of the paintings here, since I don't know that I need to maintain two sites as exhaustively as I do this one. And I've been assembling an artist's statement and business cards and I'm working on a brochure. So, busy.
I had lunch with a wonderful plein air painter named Sandy Ostrau, who lives not far from me. Check her stuff out. It has great use of brushstroke and color, and she does that simplicity thing just wonderfully by doing a series of paintings in which she eliminates unnecessary detail. (Sounds like Strunk & White: "Omit needless words!") It actually makes me want to try redoing a few still lifes to see if I can simplify. This is a bit of a surprise, but not a shock. What I'm learning is that in making art you have to do what feels right.
If anyone has any hints on artist's statement, I could use them. Mine is a bit melodramatic right now.