2 from the studio

Been working on a couple of paintings…thought I’d let you have a peek. They aren’t titled yet. That decision is made when all is finished. These will be entered in some competitions.

Nearly-completeNew-work-in-the-studio

Artwork of the month

This month I’ve decided to show “Road to Tarin Kowt”. This painting was initiated by a response to the knowledge that a son of family friends was joining the Afghanistan conflict in the ADF. This was a shock to us, and I’d seen many images of misery and death on TV, in the vicinity of Tarin Kowt. My eldest daughter was present at her friends home just an hour or so after his birth, and said she remembered seeing him as a new baby, not imagining that 23 years later he would be deployed in the army to fight in someone else’s war. We were sad, as was his family.

I made this painting soon after, and it’s colours and forms show a contortedness and violence….quite powerful, even disturbing, yet the work still remains harmonious in its appearance, and the colours are vivid, strong. I wanted the painting to reflect the idea of combat, and ever present danger of IED’s along the road to Tain Kowt. Perhaps the viewer can observe this also, when looking at this artwork.

Artworks of the month: Shadow and reflection

This month I’m reviewing three photographs that make use of shadow and reflection as subject. When I approached these subjects I was looking for a fresh, simple, and immediate response….how to make a balanced and harmonious image using only a few elements. The two “Shadow” photos make use of light as well as shade to create an almost abstract image. I was interested in the pattern created on the wall surface, and repeat pattern is a principle that can easily be applied to both photography and painting. I use knowledge gained from my painting experience and apply this to photography in order to balance elements such as contrast e.g. dark/light and large spaces/pattern. These images are almost monochromatic in colour scheme.

The other image I’m reviewing is that of “Rocks and Reflection”. Taken in a fern house of the local botanic gardens, this image shows double layers of interest….that of the pebbles and water, overlaid with reflections from the overhanging fern trees. The colour is also limited, which prevents the subject from becoming too complex and distracting. I also like the way the multiple layers bring forth different textures, and the elements in the subject possess a delicacy which creates visual interest.

Instituting the “Artwork of the month”

Beginning of each month I’ll upload images of one or more artworks, and discuss these in terms of my practice. Usually the pieces will be my own works, but potentially other famous and familiar images can be shown.

This month I’m looking at some digital images from my Gallery 2 page, “Dark Water #1” and “Dark Water #2”.

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These images represent unfathomable mystery and even danger. The notion that the superficial surface of things hiding the unseen and even unknowable is something┬áthat I’ve often played with, and these two images with gentle patterns and reflections lead the viewer to contemplate “what lies beneath”. When we examine our psyche many unknown and fearful emotions and memories rise up from the depths. In a previous solo exhibition, The Art of Exploration (2006), I dwelt on the idea of hidden depths, water and journeying into the unknown places of the psyche. Water is often used as a symbol of these concepts, and I continue to explore these ideas in my work. If we research this symbol it’s evident that “water” is universal in it’s meaning(s) including that of purification. Ironically water is needed to cleanse what’s hidden beneath its own depths!

On the level of aesthetics I’ve always found water patterns intriguing and beautiful, and these two digital images are both beautiful and haunting. Green and blue are the natural colours of the medium, and I’ve allowed the ripples to be accented to emphasise this patterning.They feel complete in their simplictity. Pool, pond, river edge, or ocean? This is left up to the viewer and their imagination.