Sunday, September 27, 2015

Getting back to pastels

Water Lillies-work in progress,  pastel on paper

As you know this series has had strange twist and turns to it. I can paint for a moment, I can't paint for a week and than suddenly I started painting again last night. It's very interesting where this series is headed.

The problem I think with the initial feeling of success when a series starts is that you don't want to ruin what you started. Last night I broke through the fear that comes with this step in the process.

The first painting is a piece called child of ten-I mentioned it in a previous post. It is very biographical and I guess a bit of a self portrait. My dad dying when I was ten definitely has effected my painting and writing and this painting is a walk through the years of creating.

It is a child sitting by a willow tree-a tree that we had in our backyard in New Jersey. The roots travel deep into the ground where another landscape of sorts becomes underground, all of my fears and thoughts about life, death and loss mingle within the roots of this tree and in the oblong box that lies beneath is a symbol of the past. On the surface of the ground you follow the landscape back into the distance where blackbirds fly across the sky. blackbirds are a reoccurring theme in many of my poems and writing. Across the yard is a clothesline with towels blowing in the breeze a fond child hood memory of when things seemed so much simpler.

The next is an oil of Calvary complete with symbols of many of the images of the event. As I get overwhelmed with ideas I turn to another and last night it was a brand new pastel. It was an image of water lilies which I saw at the North Haven Gallery-the colors struck me so the pastel began.

The next pastel I picked up was a sunflower pastel that seemed to go nowhere. The exciting thing about this is I was able to just have fun. I worked less on perfecting the flowers and more on the feeling and atmosphere of chaos. When you look at a field of sunflowers back lit by the rising sun you don't usually focus on just one, it's more of a chaos of light and color and that is what this mixed media pastel turned into.

Would love to hear your thoughts on the images and look forward to sharing more as the series progresses.

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