More energies…

I finished ( at least I think I did lol) the latest large painting. A mass of energy directed onto the canvas, this one is what it is and the responses to it have been interesting and diverse, which is what all art should evoke. At 40 by 60, with the bold colours and movement, it is not for the weak of heart, or for those who favour more subdued colours or scenes, but I love it…I think…unless I work on it more. Unfortunately, it has been difficult to get a photo that captures the essence of it live as the light tends to play with the layering of glazes and changes the colours and the details.

untitled-View 1 oil on canvas 40/60 knives

untitled-View 1
oil on canvas
40/60
knives

Untitled-View 2 Different light Oil on canvas 40/60 Knives

Untitled-View 2
Different light
Oil on canvas
40/60
Knives

And something that harkens back to the series I have been playing with. This one shows the complimentary yet conflicting energies that sometimes we deal with in our souls.

Energies Oil on Canvas Knives

Energies
Oil on Canvas
Knives

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Energies

After a while of different directions (turtles, moose, aboriginal inspired styles), I found myself swinging back to the knives. I had a need to return to bolder, bigger, more movement. There were energies at play, building, waiting to be told in giant stories with broad strokes, energetic slashes and colour, colour and more colour.

Awakenings was the first to emerge, followed by Vertigo, the largest canvas to date that I have worked on, almost as tall as I am. Both of these are going to TAG Art Gallery in St Catherines, along with Ghost Spirit and others.

The last one is untitled to date as it is still a work in progress, but it is pure energy, an explosion of colour. We will see where that one ends up, but channeling energies seems to be where I will be playing for the next while.

Awakenings Oil on Canvas

Awakenings
Oil on Canvas

Vertigo Oil on Canvas

Vertigo
Oil on Canvas

Size perspective-artist and Vertigo

Size perspective-artist and Vertigo

Untitled-Unfinished yet

Untitled-Unfinished yet

Energy

I am a firm believer that we as artists are conduits for energies. Sometimes a work will “flow” effortlessly onto the canvas a symbiotic meeting of spirit and media. Other times, there is a battle, a struggle where it seems like energies are at cross purposes. Perhaps, the story being told isn’t the “right” one for the moment, the intuitive spirit is waging an inner war with the logical, what is thought to be the “right” story.

For this painting, I started off with an idea or concept. I have always loved Georgia O’Keefe’s paintings and saw a plate created to represent her work that was stunning, a balance between delicate and powerful. I loved the energy that it had so started off with that in mind. Wrong. Somewhere deep within, my own energies, the place where I am in my psyche, spirit, was at counterpoint to what I thought I wanted to do. I started off in one direction and absolutely hated it. It was not subtle (not that many of my works ever are). It sat there, heavy on the canvas, flat and boring and disappointing.

I looked at it. Left it. Looked at it again. Was tempted to pitch it. But stubborn woman that I am, I was determined to fix the damnable thing. And that was when I let it go-the preconceived notions of what I thought I wanted to achieve, the ideas of what it “should” look like. I pulled out my knives, mixed a crap load (technical term) of colours that I “felt” at that moment, and hit it blind, no direction, no “have to”, no “thinking” or “should”, just “be”, let the energy and where I am take me into the space and place where the energies are just channeled from the soul onto canvas.

I am much happier with the energy of the piece, the flow of colours, contrasts and movements because that is where “I” am. And that is the whole point really sometimes ūüôā Not the best pic as I took it on my phone since the painting is wet, really large and hard to move, but you get the idea I hope.

Energy

Have you ever?

There are so many things that I would like to capture on canvas-so many things I would like to try.

Have you ever wanted to paint a full wall? Take a blank slate and just cover it in colour? A huge canvas and just set yourself free and smoosh, and splatter? What about taking the canvas and becoming the implement that paints, use your hands, your feet, your whole body to immerse yourself in the process so that you and the canvas become one.

Have you ever wanted to paint the smell of spring rain? The sound of the loons on the lake as it stills and reflects during the magic hour? The smell of the wood smoke from the sauna-the anticipation of relaxation before the plunge into the chill water that refreshed and rejuvenated the soul? The hush in the forest in winter when giant snowflakes drifting delicately to the ground is the only sound you will hear? The sound of a child’s laughter-the full belly kind that is pure unabashed joy? The feeling you get when you play with little baby toes and fingers? That kiss at the moment where things click and you melt? The warmth of a hug where all you need is the strength of the arms around you? The taste of tears? That deep satisfying moment where you are sitting with someone and not saying a word, and everything is good in the world?

Oh the things left to try.

A study of power…

Recently,¬†I had been asked¬†to try to¬†tell some stories related to my work. (Yes, again lol).¬† For anyone reading my process as I’ve been going along, this has not been an easy task. This introspective exercise has been more exercise in frustration in many ways, since the sub conscious mind often takes over the artist process and a perceived spontaneity comes into play. But, when I look at my work as whole, is it really that spontaneous? Yes, I do like to play with colour, textures and movement. Yes, I do like to experiment with techniques, knives and brushes. I immerse myself in the process and let the process take over, letting it take me where it will. That said, if I really look closely there is a connection between most of what I do.

I’ve come to the conclusion that my paintings are all infused with or inspired by¬†“power”.¬† The inspiration may come from all sources, a giggle, a whispered phrase, a few notes in a melody, a doodle that take on a life of its own,¬†a particular mood I happened to be¬†in, or my life¬†experiences as¬†I walk on a¬†path in my life¬†journey and document all around me through the lens of brushstrokes. ¬†Regardless of where they come from, powerful moments make up the bulk of my work, interweaving a connection whether it’s the power of a certain emotion or subject.

The natural world, the planet, the universe in all its glory has always¬†been held in¬†fascination by me. In that sense,¬†the Northern Lights against the¬†pines, the possibility of a mystical “fairy” forest, an ethereal other world¬†where that intrinsic perfection and magical beauty can still exist unsullied without the contamination of the non-believer or human footprint are not that disconnected in that they¬†are imbued¬†with a powerful subtext. ¬†The silence of the snowy forest when you can actually sit and hear nothing but the sound of the wind whispering around the snow laden trees has power. The smell, feel and sight of the storm clouds gathering on the shore across the lake, imbuing a stillness before the energy of nature is unleashed¬†has power as does the beauty of the water at sunset with the lilies bobbing as the lady of the lake sings them to sleep. ¬†The concept of “mother”, the back upon which the safety and security of all manners of creatures/beings/energies has power. The concept of “nurture”, neither male nor female, that feeling of being nestled in a warm cocoon of calm, positive energy is powerful. The feminine construct, her beauty, strength, sexuality, limitations, entrapment, struggles and successes is powerful.

So, maybe, just maybe I have figured it out…or maybe not lol. Who knows…as this process continues I am sure other things will come to mind and the story will change somewhat.

In the meantime, some visual musings on the complexities of being feminine :o)

Like a Moth to the Flame