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January 25, 2005

the passion

This isnít riding a bike.

Itís not just about putting down the shape and filling in the form. It isnít even just a case of looking and seeing. Not that these skills arenít vital to the aim, they are. Theyíre not to be overlooked, theyíre necessary if you have a passion you want to express.

Skills of looking and seeing, skills of handling tones and tints, of big and small brushes, of composition and perspective and shape and form and proportion. These are the tools with which to express the passion.

I donít just fill in shapes with coloured paint. I do fill in shapes with coloured paint, clearly, but I struggle with other things. Things I donít fully understand. The IT of a picture. The thing that brings it above painting by numbers, or copying, or merely pushing paint.

When I paint I feel the whole thing. I paint every part of the figure at the same time. I bring the whole thing up off the ground like a photograph developing in a tray. I feel something bigger than the figure, something extending from them, something emanating from them, some quality of light and strength, some power.

When the paint is oily on the palette and the brushes are loaded with their own colourful history, something happens. Everything contributes, the model, the music, the company, the light Ė especially the light, and the pose, to bring the picture close to an image I have in my head.

But the image is not fully formed, itís fleeting, obscure, itís a feeling as much as a picture, itís what I aim for in a painting, what I struggle to achieve. And I canít help thinking cyclingís a lot easier.


Posted by john at January 25, 2005 10:18 PM

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