Artists are interesting people, why do I think that? Well, artists like to interrogate the world – not just the visual world. My experience is that they are not afraid to challenge the ‘norms’ of life. For a start, most artists I know are aiming to portray a world in which the superficial ‘look’ is not the aim, the idea is more often to convey a mood, an emotion, to bring to our attention political and humanitarian causes or in the case of portraiture, the character of the individual. Take Angus McDonald’s portrait of asylum seeker and author Behrouz Boohani may be photorealistic, but just look into the eyes of the portrait and you see his soul and his complex history – it was fitting that this painting won the Archibald People’s Choice Prize.
If you have seen the film, Mr Turner, you will have seen the incident where he binds himself to the mast of a ship in a storm to really experience the terror and beauty of it – you can see his depictions of tumultuous weather events in his later masterpieces.
If you look at the work of the impressionists, there is an attempt to capture a mood, a fleeting flash of light or weather, it is a deep and analytical practice. Just look at some of the moods here;
As I work to expand my art practice, I am consciously aiming to capture a sense of place, a mood, an emotion rather than a realistic image. In order to ‘push’ this I have been taking my sketching practice on the run to a larger mode as ‘en plein air’ painting. You will have seen this in some of my recent posts to insta and facebook, I am trying to get out in a weekly practice of painting in the field on a larger scale on prepared surface in acrylics. I had read a lot about the benefits of really painting en plein air from other artists, but it all seemed a bit challenging to take more than a sketch book, but the artist, Tim Allen showed me another way with a piece of MDF, prepared loose canvas and spontaneously just starting somewhere.I have found the process to be really freeing and somehow quite meditative. I encourage you artists out there to give it a go!
Artists at Lennox Arts Collective in February
On now until next Thursday, 11th February we have the wonderful work of Jill Trevillian, ‘Just Passing Through’. Jill makes ceramics – wonderful pear shapes with black coral stalks – I couldn’t resist buying one of these and ‘shell fragments’ as well as her beautiful paintings – some of Provence and also moody beach scenes. Jill and I have travelled together in France on a couple of occasions, most recently on gorgeous Belle Ile in 2019.
Sharon Tudor Smith is the next of our exhibiting artists, presenting “Byron to Ballina’ – art inspired by our local beaches. Superb paintings for your wall! It is on from 12th – 25th February, so come on down 10 -3pm any day to have a look!
Now, down to the yucky bits – the problem of my website being hacked has been pretty continuous, with help I get it back and then it goes down again! At the moment we think it is clean and under control so I am sending out this newsletter in a different way as I cannot access my subscriber list. I have some names on a database and can send via Mail chimp. If you would like to be included, please send me your email address and ask to be included on my database firstname.lastname@example.org