Saturday, January 31, 2009

Thoughts on My Painting

In general, I feel that I work in a fairly intuitive manner. I don't have a "method" per se of getting a painting done, but I do have natural inclinations to the way I work. I did not have any painting instruction during my short time at ACA, so I am for the most part a self taught oil painter. Most of the techniques and modes of the medium are not knowingly a part of my painting vocabulary. Any that I do employ have been discovered by trial and error, and a few less by reading.

I have been taking some note of this way of working in the past week and have come to the conclusion that the feel or mood of a painting is more important to me than the exact representation of a particular subject or environment. Technique must follow vision and it is only a vehicle to get to that vision. I have known this personal supreme importance in a wordless sort of way for a long time. These observations that have long been nothing more than intuitions are very difficult to spell out.

All artists are creating illusions and my work in particular with its use of anthropomorphic mythology and narrative pushes this fact further. Even in the embryonic stages of an idea, I am first struck by the feeling of the image in my mind. If the feeling is strong enough, I move ahead to the research step. If it isn't, the idea is put on the back burner to cook until the right combination of images and words come together to meet that emotional standard.

As far as technique, I do not follow the traditional method of blocking in shapes, working from form to detail. I jump in right away starting with a few lines for placement of the subject and go straight to the eyes working out from there in detail. This is the way I see.


Kathleen, a Glass Artist said...

Again, I'm intrigued by how each artist approaches the creation of their work. Tracey, I was wondering if your draw rough sketches of those 'back burner' images in a journal or somewhere that you can go back and look at them again to see if they are ready to be painted?

You do a wonderful job of posting the progress of your paintings. On your 1/28/2009 post where you have him resting on shallow waters, that just seemed so right, like you had found the right setting for him.

Your comments today just prove that there isn't a right or wrong way to approach how one creates their work.

Bonnielynn Brankey said...

What a scary, yet good feeling it is to deliver one of your "kids" for someone else to look after.
The day in June that I took a cherished paint to UPS for it to go on its final journey to an art lover, I got teary-eyed.

Thank you for sharing the thoughts on your techniques of painting. I find that we all paint to get to the same common destination, but our paths are all different.