Saturday, October 24, 2009

October 24, 2009 - Day 75

Da Vinci watercolor on Saunders Waterford paper

The question of the day for me today was:

"If stupidity was an abstract painting what would it look like?"

This is my interpretation of stupidity - being surrounded by all sorts of interesting bits but allowing nothing through the walls of your consciousness.

Geez, I am starting to sound like a "real" artist with all this talk about interpretation. Has hell frozen over yet?

Friday, October 23, 2009

October 23, 2009 - Day 74

Da Vinci watercolor on Saunders Waterford paper

Tonight was a cold and blustery fall night. I started thinking what would that look like as an abstract painting. This is what came to mind.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

October 22, 2009 - Day 73

Da Vinci watercolor on Saunders Waterford paper

I don't really know what this style of painting is called. Is it abstract? Is it minimalism? I don't know what it is but I painted it because I was feeling homesick for the wide open skies of the prairies. The black triangles are meant to represent stands of trees. I hate to admit it but I actually like this one and I do get the feeling of home when I look at it.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

October 21, 2009 - Day 72

Reference Image

Da Vinci watercolor on Saunders Waterford paper

Damn! For a brief moment I was able to see the abstract in real life. The ability is gone for the moment but I am sure that it will be back again.

Today's reference photo made it easy to see in abstract. The colors and shape of the water jumped out at me when I saw this photograph by Kelly Gesner in the Photo of the Day article in today's paper.

I realized that I could create abstract paintings from the world around me. Whether I was looking at water or sunlight on flowers all I would need to do is remove the detail leaving just the shapes and/or colors.

I know that there is more to abstract paintings than just simplification of a subject but this is the first time in my life that I have ever been able to look at real life and see it in abstract. That is a big step for me.

One thing that I will need to find out though is if there is a copyright issue in a case like this when I am using another person's photo as the basis for an abstract painting. Is the abstract different enough to make it my own or am I infringing on the rights of the photographer by using their picture?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

October 20, 2009 - Day 71

Da Vinci watercolor & India Ink on Saunders Waterford paper

Basically today's painting is a colored doodle. I used to draw these a lot as a teenager. I start with one shape and then just keep adding a shape or a pattern until the paper is full. Once that is done I add the color.

I never realized that I had such issues around abstract art, nonobjective art and nonrepresentational art. I can appreciate everything from propaganda art to illustrations in children's books but anything even slightly abstract and I feel like the artist is trying to scam me.

Creating these abstract paintings the last couple of days has really angered me. I feel like I am not painting a "real" painting when I paint abstract. I feel like I am scamming people by these paintings because I don't consider them to be real art.

Art takes skill and technical ability. These abstracts are pointless and stupid but because they are creating such strong emotion in me I am going to keep doing them. Maybe it will blow out a couple of my blocks along the way.

Monday, October 19, 2009

October 19, 2009 - Day 70

Da Vinci watercolor and Royal India Ink (black)
on Saunders Waterford paper

Second painting in my abstract series and I hate it. I have to remember that there is no "wrong" way to paint an abstract and that I should just loosen up and go with the flow.

On the plus side, I really love the way the black india ink flows on so smoothly and how very black it is against the red paint. As I was painting an image came to mind of an octopus spraying it's ink in a cloud. Maybe tomorrow I will try to paint an abstract that gives that feeling without providing any detail.

I think in the future I will also have to do some india ink paintings/drawings. The black ink is just so beautiful.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

October 18, 2009 - Day 69

Da Vinci watercolor on Saunders Waterford cold press paper

OK - here we go. I have decided that I am going to attempt a series of abstract paintings.

Let me be blunt - I am not an abstract kind of artist. I have always believed that abstracts were for artists who didn't have any real talent or technical skill. Anybody can paint a red stripe on a black canvas and spin it anyway they want to say how it represents all these great and wonderful things. I don't buy it - literally.

So why am I painting abstracts now? I want a break from the detailed work I have been doing. I want to paint something that is bright and colorful. I don't want to spend a lot of time planning my paintings. Finally, I want to see if painting abstracts will loosen up my style and allow me to paint more freely.