Monday, April 19, 2010

Le FAUVES (the Wild Beasts of ART) Got Me

I guess its my turn as Tim called and said "Hey, put some of your work up." I replied, "Arrr, I be gettin' to it, soon enough." So here are two I've done this spring and the self-portrait is from this winter. The Wheat Field is from last fall. The self-portrait looks like my cousin Bobby. There's a bunch of Bobby stories I can tell. Anyway, I think it's the teeth. I had some real incisors when I was younger and they must be still there in my psyche.
I am working from the influence of a group of artists called the Fauves. Henri Matisse, James Ensor, and Edvard Munch are the ones that stand out in my mind. They loved color and had an irreverence for painting using 'local' color. They used color in an 'emotional' way. That suits me to a T. I use only three colors for these landscape paintings. I try to squeeze a lot out of those three colors. That goes back to my college days when the gospel of Marshall McLuhan was in full swing. The message is in the medium.

I work on a soft warm gray under painting and add the drawing in burnt umber with a small brush like a liner but shorter. After the drawing is in I begin to lay in large areas of color darker that I plan to use nearer to the finished painting. Lighter mixtures of similar color are added and built up. I finish with more drawing in a darker color like burnt umber and turquoise blue.

It's a great day when Tim and I get to paint. There's nothing else on my mind except grabbing a breakfast on the saunter and creating under a simple challenge to capture something of the day to take back home. Each painting like a remembered smell stirs up the exact feeling of that day. Where we were, what the temperature was like and what was said about the subject we had chosen. That's a whole 'ball game' and we're always the winning team. Woo-hah!

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