A Blackbird, A Trap and a Language.
|Tri-color Blackbird- Michigan Bar Area|
Long ago I started saying, "There are two components to Art. One is developing the craft or techniques to say what you want to say the best way possible. The second is having something to say that is based on your own experiences and reflections on those experiences." Making art and trial and error studio time throughout life help to develop technique, or the visual language. Getting out there, or in there deeply help to develop the focus or "message" of the work. Answering the Call To Adventure as Joseph Campbell said.
I have done quite a bit of looking inward, and outward through the years. Travel, really leaving myself open to "feel" and "witness" as well as analytical meditation. I try to take some of that home to my studio, and hash out how to transmit my experiences through art. For my art to change, I must change. How do you bring the viewer closer? Close enough to poke her in the eye with your message? Doing this takes a bit of hunting and trapping. I don't want to kill anyone, but killing ideas, ignorance and habits, sometimes, art is capable of this. I have experienced this myself, looking at Art and Nature has killed me and made me new numerous times.
How do you pick out your symbols? Your story? Your protagonists? If you even use them?
|* "The Milliners Assistant"-KS2016|
|* "Sweet Prince" KS2015|
As you can see, I have captured an image of a Tri-Colored Blackbird. A Regional and uncommon bird from the larger Central Valley of CA. It looks much like the Red Wing Blackbird, a common site along country roads, in California. You may have seen a tri color and not known it. These birds are declining rapidly going from 2-3 million from data from the 20's to a semi-current 145,000 birds. Habitat loss is much of the problem.
|* "Welcome Party"KS2016|
|Rabari Earrings- India|
Sometimes I use images directly, other times just interpret parts of them for my needs. I collect (photograph) images of Symbols, Characters and Backgrounds. I mix them with imaginary, distorted and formulated images as well as painting objects from life. Whatever it takes to get the image I want.... keep in mind, I don' know exactly what the finished piece will look like when I start. I have a "feeling" a word, or a topic, then I start from there. I add and subtract as I go, the work suggests to me where to go next. I almost always paint the entire background field in its entirety, then paint the other parts on top. You can often see the texture of the background paint through the over painted objects.
|Painted Iron Hinge, England|
|unfinished "Fancy Work" KS2016|