Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Looking Beyond Lilacs... and the Obvious
In the last post, I portrayed a very personal interest in employing lilacs as a backdrop really in the votive memorial piece "Where Have All the Flowers Gone". I intentionally issued the lilacs a secondary role to other more important elements in the composition. I did this by decreasing attention to detail to the lilacs and by employing finer detail to the stronger red elements which really were the main focus in the painting. Here the use of lilacs supports a purely emotional resonse other than landscape value as was the case in the post before in Barriefield Village.
The second of three jpegs used in today's post again revisits a purely landscape interest and treatment, as is the most common approach in plein air usage. Plein air painting is much more than an outing to create one painting. It is an opportunity to be immersed in an environment that is stimulating... an environment that offers one the opportunity to see... think... smell and touch... an environment to hunt and to gather in. "Ideas" can be carried back to the studio to "trigger" deeper thimking and development of the theme... in this case "lilacs".
Two such studio extensions come out of this same plein air experience arise from two very different sources. The middle jpeg ... is a more traditional floral still life incorporates one of my "collectibles"... in this case a Crown preserve jar from my Mom's Kitchen "equipment". In this situation I have given emphasis to detail in all parts of the composition... in an attempt to visually link the notion of a lasting fragrance of Spring,2010... and of my Mom's memory....hence the title"Preserving Spring 2010".
The first of the three jpegs is a kind of "still life" that I captured in one of my early morning walks in the village. I noticed this old Fargo truck... a veteran of WWII... "re-tired" as a makeshift tow truck... and now ... fully retired to waste away amongst a lovely grove of fragrant purple lilacs. The two juxtoposed in contrast made "Me" think of.... "The Beauty... and the Beast".
Perhaps my Romantic side does run away with "Me"... some might say. But "I" would argue that the thematic way "I" approach painting keeps "The Flow" ever moving. "I" never am at a loss for ideas to paint... nor do "I" find myself needing breaks that often lead to vacant hours or much worse... discouragement or Self-doubt - the slayer of many artists.
So at the conclusion of "The Lilac Series"... I offer this approach as food for thought to anyone who might feel challenged by the "piece-by-piece aproach"... each done in isolation to the next. Might be worth a try!
Good Painting to all!