Friday, January 27, 2017

Rotten Eggs

Trying to finish up a few last paintings for my upcoming show.  When I was asked if I'd do a show I said of course and figured I'd just hand over some stuff I already had done. Then it occurred to me that doing that would be kinda lazy so I set out to do a slew of new paintings. Now I'm questioning which idea was worse. I also toyed with the idea of doing some sort of theme and that didn't work out either. The weather didn't cooperate with me to go out and create 20 new landscapes either so I was left to work from photographs or attempt the dreaded still life.
I don't hate painting a still life, I hate setting them up. What do you put in them so it doesn't look like you raided a junk store and decided to paint it all? Designing a still life, there should be a college course on that. It's a lot like food. Sure you could grab everything out of the refrigerator and cook it in some sort of casserole and you'd find somebody to eat it, but it doesn't mean it's good.
What I've discovered, over this last month, is that creating and painting a still life is much like plein air painting. It has to be something that catches your eye, keeps you interested and inspires you to paint it. Most of all the lighting has to be "special". I probably spent more time setting stuff up and messing with the light than actually painting. A lot of the stuff I tried didn't work out and even though, at the time, it felt like a waste of time I realised I was learning.  Learning why some things didn't work and why other things did.
Nearing the end I've come to the conclusion that lighting is everything, whether it be light or lack of. Just like the movie, Poltergeist, if the light isn't good don't go into it.


  1. You may have swerved into something with the comment about still life being like plein air - instead of setting them up, maybe we should treat the inside of our house (or restaurant or whatever) like the great outdoors and pick some corner of it that appeals? In any case, your comment about the lighting certainly applies, whether set up or found as is.

  2. Looking forward to seeing what all your hard work has produced!