My painter friend Cory Stafford and I took advantage of the choice weather and enjoyed a plein air session. It was a lot of fun, and provided ample challenge to make the time fly.
This painting was produced between about 1:40 and 4:00 pm that day. It was really bright out, kind of a hazy grey, and the lake had a reflective sheet of ice which was melting as we tried to capture the scene.
After getting back into the studio the I could tell how my palette choices were influenced by the outdoor experience. My working knowledge of light and compressed atmospheric color was started with some plein air paintings when pursuing my BFA. However in the years after that my main focus has been working to produce larger scale studio paintings which are influenced by the landscape.
It felt great to be engaged in the now with paint, while the shadows began to form and change the dynamics of the scene. I will definitely be making more attempts at site painting and have created the new 2015 Plein Air gallery under the Paintings tab to catalog them as they happen.
This last project, entitled “Paintriotic Jam” enabled a multi-color stripe making technique shown here…
I must acknowledge the recent inspiration of Devin Troy Strother, in terms of using a good amount of paint with action and then leaving it. The aspect of athleticism is also evident, as well as the play on words from his show titled “Space Jam.” Here, that spirit comes out in the form of racing stripes and ribbons.
The appearance of the “GOD aspirin, coin medallion portal” image is by no accident either. My friend and fellow artist Tony Luib has a way with stacking cylindrical forms that is whimsical yet powerful. Tony has also animated these forms both singularly and in groupings, which are very intriguing. He sometimes also mixes elements of photographic imagery which adds a natural feel and contrast.
Another point to take note of is a parallel inspiration from the “Stafford Device” which is often used by Cory Stafford as a visual archetype within his painting vocabulary. (Cory is also a good friend to this day.) With these new paintings I’ve taken inspiration from them and basically continuously repeated opposing directions to establish a coin like form which contains a hall of mirrors. In essence this provides the visual schematic for the “GOD coin portal” that can reference a few things.
First there is the aspect of implied dimensionality contained within a portal like object. I was thinking about the idea that if all religions are equal, then it seems like this earth is not a proper arena for all “teams” to occupy the playing field at once. Sadly this is evidenced by continued war and strife for centuries…so what if there were an equal and safe opportunity to travel to a like minded spiritual dimension so that while living on the earth we could all get along.
The “Coin Portal” as an object seems like it could be a handy way to make a new type of encrypted currency, which might have something like repeater layers in order to create depths of wealth within a very compact nano module. On a basic level visually, I am very intrigued by the repeating pattern that can be contained within a fixed space. On the paintings to follow I might experiment with the same idea while using different shapes than the oval.
This new portal cable image came together in my sketchbook the other night. Originally my understanding was that the drawn pairing resembled two spliced ends of a data cable. This theme goes back to my explorations with transmitting data visually via satellite disks and units in the sky with repeater hyphenation-like perforated lines.
Thanks for reading and I look forward to the next fresh start.
2015 has been a blast so far, as winter usually brings quality time in the studio.
It seems as though I try to savor each moment of the application and sometimes wish the painting would erase itself after I photograph it. With the additive process I find a thrill in putting it down, and then doing some overpainting where appropriate. I’ve worked on larger paper a bit as well lately and am considering making more of an effort to explore the drawn and painted pulp sheets.