Tuesday, 17 July 2012
If you go down in the woods today...
This is the first time, for a long time, I have painted in thick impasto style and not in watercolour. The paintings are on cheap daler boards with cheap acrylics. I didn't want to go out and invest in a range of paints if the act of painting was not worth it. That said, I think I am about to make a dent in my meagre savings (buying artist quality) as I have not had so much fun for a long time.
Acrylic suits me, it is water soluble and easy to use with children around. Although I love oils I don't like the smell, the solvents and the glazes; the smell of linseed makes me queasy and the children and cat are an accident waiting to happen with white spirit. I love the way that this style of paint can have depth and translucence in one. Thin washes can be overlaid onto thicker bases. I still love the delicacy and intricacy of watercolours but am falling for the charms of this brasher and more exuberant medium.
What I have needed to do is look at the impasto styling of other artists to help me make the marks I want. Catherine Hyde White's style has been a huge help. There is very definitely a learning from the master here. She is a wonderful artist with an ability to create a depth of colour and texture in her paintings. These pale imitations are an attempt to develop that velvety finish and colour. I have also been delving back into the past, looking at Klimt, Schiele and Picasso. Again wanting depth and brush stroke textures to help me.
The images themselves are from two textile bears and a needle felted fox that I made some time ago. The bears started from the inspiration of a Kalevala pattern ( I wear the earrings, necklace and ring with this design on the rare occasions I use jewellery). I consider them my totems, as far as this is possible for them to be mine. I suspect that I will be making more images of these bears. I am feeling a compulsion to paint and draw them rather a lot. They seem to want to have stories told and I am waking with them snuffling in my ear in the wee small hours.