Monday, September 13, 2010

Mystic Jalopy

After pushing paint aroud this piece over and over, suddenly an image appeared to me out of a bramble of doodles and strokes, like out of some weird hallucination: a floating cactus ball hovering over the discarded hull of an old car...made of rock...immersed in water.  The sound of a babbling brook and chirping birds wafts in just over your shoulder.. the air is crisp and clear. A lone ciccada revs up his buzzer and makes a huge racket. All the while, an oddly shaped mutant cactus ball floats over the right side of this picture.

What does this all mean??

It means that when I'm standing up for hours working on pulling a composition together, sometimes I can get ridiculous!

This picture is acrylic on canvas, and uses primarily four colors: green, orange, blue, and yellow.  I'd just rececently seen a show about Impressionist artist Paul Cezanne (at the Phoenix Art Museum), and I noticed something about his work: he didn't use black; rather, the darkest color he'd use (at least in the painting I was staring at) was a thalo blue (that is, a very dark blue-green color)  What happens when you use only colors (as opposed to using black, which isn't technically a "color", but rather, a "value") is that the colors you paint interacts with all of the other colors on your canvas.  Not so with black; you won't find black on the "color wheel", thus, black isn't part of any "color scheme"; it just sits there, announcing its presence, but not really contributing to the harmony of the color balance in a painting. Black can, however, add a lot of value contrast, which can help a picture really "pop", but if you want vibrant color interaction, it's best to stay away from it (unless you mix it with some other color)

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