Artist Vision: How To See.
Greetings! I’d like to share with you two of my latests pieces in my “Three Minute Egg Series”. Furthermore, I’d like to talk about how I come up with my artistic vision for a series, using my current paintings as an example.
The Good Question.
A friend and collector of mine asked me a tough question a couple of months ago. She had seen my earlier paintings and blog posting about my three minute egg series. The question was how to see and understand my paintings. I immediately thought “Oh, I need to do an artist’s statement for this series”.
OOPS! Please stop! Before you read any more, I’d like to ask you to please just look at the paintings. Without analyzing, allow yourself to have a first impression; a first reaction. It doesn’t matter if you like them or not, just allow yourself to respond in your own personal manner.
Vision: About Relationships.
Now then, back to what the series is about; the artist’s vision.
When I start thinking about an artists statement or vision, I start remembering relationships and stories about the subject. For example, I did not enjoy eating eggs when I am a child, though three minute eggs were the least offensive. That being said, I was always intrigued by the egg cups. The particular eggs cups we had were ones that my parents purchased when they were living in Spain. To me, they were exotic, interesting and special.
Still Life and Project Set Up.
Now, lets consider the set up of the three minute egg still life. I knew I was going to be going from realistic to abstract when I started this project. You might remember that the first seven completed were part of a workshop I attended with artist Gabriel Lipper. (Paintings 8 and 9 were done after the completion of class).
So, the set up. I looked on line at still life set ups from some of the Master’s of still life, like Chardin. Then, I considered what I had laying around in the kitchen. Time is a theme I had been wanting the explore so the kitchen timer was selected for the still life. Eggs shells are one of my favorite subjects because I feel the need to study how light falls on the curved shapes, so they were in. Timer plus eggs suggests three minute egg in my mind. To complete the set up, I added a spoon and napkin.
Design: Like A Puzzle.
To understand what you see in front of you, it might be good to realize that I like to design my abstractions. Thinking of a tapestry or a puzzle, I am concerned with how the pieces fit together. I select and create a scheme to be the backbone structure. Then, I arrange my shapes, searching for something that captures my imagination. I play close attention to the light and dark pattern I create because it helps direct the viewer around the painting.
Still Life Objects: Like Family and Friends.
So, what does it mean? Think about your family and friends. When you’re taking a group picture, how do you arrange yourselves? If you’re all getting along and happy, you might stand close to each other and be fairly equal in rank. But, maybe someone is having a birthday or something extra special. Perhaps they stand a little bit higher or forward from everyone else. Then, there is the shy person who tries to hide behind friends. One must not forget the class clown who does things like stands on their heads or makes a silly face.
Well, organizing a still life is like arranging friends. And when I work in a series, I arrange and re-arrange my buddies, or subject matter. I paint them different colors; change sizes; change layouts, and generally experiment. The more I work, the more ideas come into my mind. I’m also learning how color, shape, size, line, direction, texture, that is to say the elements of design, work together to create mood.
Artist Vision: Evolves with the Series.
Lets think back to the beginning: what am I saying? Right now, I would say that I am exploring a still life motif that is linked to my memories of childhood and the three minute egg breakfast.
In time, the series may start to take on a different meaning to me.
What Do You See?
Back to you. I asked you early on to just look at the paintings. Do you remember the first things that came to mind? Did you immediately see the eggs, timer, spoon and napkin? Or was it just a jumble? Now that you’ve read my account of how I developed this painting, look at the painting again. How do the paintings feel to you now? Do you see more? Does the subject speak to you? How about the paint?
More Later This Summer and Fall.
These are paintings eight and nine in the series. The plan is to create more later this summer and fall. I would like to invite you to see the earlier paintings in the blog post “Deconstructing a Realistic Painting Toward Abstraction”.
Hopefully, I have given you a way in so you may see and enjoy my paintings. Please do come back and see how the next paintings develop.
Travels Around The West.
I will be taking a break from studio painting as my husband and I travel around the West. I hope to share drawings and paintings from our travels over the next few weeks! In the meantime I do hope you are well.