Sunday, September 12, 2010

Realism vs. Abstract


It’s been a while since I’ve written in my blog. I’m an artist after all and not a writer. But I have a quiet moment right now. I have two paintings in the works, one based on realism, a figurative piece and the other an abstract.  Doesn’t probably make much sense to you right now, but will. In truth this is how my brain works, ideas constantly coming and going, churning and synthesizing. My daughter often seeing the gears turning, “so you thinking?”, she’ll quip.
In truth I have a lot of pieces started, and though many are finished there are almost as many equally unfinished. A testament to how my mind works. When I switched or transitioned to abstract in the 80's, many people wondered why. It was boredom. I was bored with the nude, I went to a figurative school, Long Beach State. Truth told it is the paint and process I love and not necessarily the subject. Not that I was a master of the human figure but I had about four solid years of drawing and painting the figure. It was not until I started to work in abstracts that I found painting stimulating again. It is how the paint reacts, merges from one color to the other, creating balance, a moment, light darkness. What is a figurative painting after all? Paint, composition, color, light. Stripped of all its illusions the abstract is all that without the illustrative connotation.  So then why jump to realism now?
I was told when I was in my twenties that I had a high level of synthesizing information. This was perhaps the biggest compliment I had ever received. His sincerity and lengthy discussion on art and physics kept our friendship strong for many years.
This particular project is about synthesizing, taking two divergent mediums digital vs. painting, and thought process, abstract vs. realism and combining the two divergent thoughts and process to create one image. It is a little bit about taking my personal history, where I started in art, figurative and combining it with what I love most, the abstract. It will still be basically figurative, but not be about the figure, but about the process. I realize this process is not earth shaking, many artists combine digital and paint. But it is logical direction for my art at this point. This first piece will be the start of a series, all figurative. It has been particularly challenging in that the first painting was of me. I had a friend who said she would pose, but the timing didn't work out. So the challenge of presenting myself put me in the role as model/artist. Now that was an interesting challenge, for more reasons than I have room to write about.

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