Thursday, 03 December 2009

New Karoo painting in progress

I have started a new landscape of the Karoo. The original photograph was taken by a friend. He captured a beautiful moment during a storm. I had to change the format of the photo to fit my canvas so I took a fair bit of poetic licence with it. The difficulty, always, when painting from a photograph is how truthful to be with the colours. The camera captures the "real" colours of a landscape. In this case they were rather dark and sombre and inhibiting. I decided to use a technique I have developed which helps in these situations, using opening colours.
Mine is Orange, so I loaded the brush with it and let rip. Soon ideas began to flow.
These "spur of the moment" decisions are important if you want to keep the painting fresh. At this time I knew I could not sustain that thought, so I decided to stop for a while and come back to it later.

A week later.

The orange I used in the beginning has all but disappeared and been replaced by yellow. I felt this was more truthful to the original image, but I am not sure if I will keep all that yellow. And my instincts are crying out to fill that white space in the top centre, but something is stopping me. It is an area of totally pure canvas. I almost want to keep it there because it is so "wrong" and against the rules of painting really. It seems to be saying something to me- I don't know what- maybe something like, "Watch this space!" In a wierd kind of way, I like the sort of tension and expectation it evokes- it disturbs me, but it keeps asking questions.
Maybe it is saying "look up" or "look there!" A sort of message. OK, now it sounds like I'm smoking something, so I will stop with this line of thought, but I really would like to know what you think!
Oh yes, just by the way, if you want to rescue this painting from further abuse, please contact me.

A few weeks later:
Here it is -the final painting which you can see at Kirstenbosch Sanlam Gallery from the 21st -31st March.

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