Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Day 98 Monday
After a little over two weeks in the heart of the dark Victorian winter I am back at the easel working furiously on the big paintings. The reasons for my respite from painting are many and should have been more foreseeable, but somehow, weren’t. As the large amount of money I had saved for this trip petered out, I found myself engaged as the local chalk busker in the town centre, doing drawings for some gold coins in my hat. The second major factor was the increasing cold weather and short daylight hours to warm the jam factory. Factor 1 had limited my kerosene ration, and I began timing my trip to the aquatic centre to an hour before they closed to warm myself in the spa and sauna before returning to the studio for a couple of final hours of painting. The third reason was that Moz came out to visit me for a week. I did absolutely no painting during this week and we spent our time on the banks of the Murray in the warm sun, drinking sparkling wine and me playing guitar while Moz wove a reed dillybag out of the long grass growing from the riverbank. After she left and a couple of painting sales later, I have kerosene and renewed vigour towards completing this body of work. I decided to begin on a completely fresh big canvas, and after two days of non-stop painting I’m putting it up for view. I realized a few things about my painting process that I seemed to have forgotten these past few weeks: I work best attacking the painting all in one go, and the on and off again process I had been employing here was keeping the painting from taking on any strong direction. When I began this one, I mixed up copious amounts of half a dozen colours I had chosen for the colour scheme and worked it up both in tone and texture until I thought I had it balanced. The bird and picker entered towards the end and took their places quite naturally. I’m enjoying thoughts about the struggle between the birds and humans in their race to denude the trees of their ripe fruit. Sometimes it carries strong masculine overtones…

1 comment:

  1. I think distraction C, the mozz, was needed : ) I'm cheering on the bird in the race!!