Been sitting outside, during that magic part of the day, panties, socks , hot coffee, chilly, dark, french bread and butter, just before sunrise, just before the birds awake from their nightly slumber and start to cry out to the world. Waiting for the birds to wake up, sipping my coffee, swishing black coffee all around in my mouth with the buttered french bread , listening to the first bustles of a new day , I take a moment to reflect over my art and the weeks behind and in front of me.
I just completed, I feel, the first leg of my journey into acrylics. Like jumping into cold water and finally catching my breath, I am at some peace with my new medium.
As I made coffee today, I passed my first set of acrylic paintings, illuminated in the dim light of early dawn and they felt good to me. May not feel good to anyone else but they feel good to me, a message is coming through. As much as life allows I will try and paint more. There is a lot to learn in technique but so much more to find out about my own nature. I would gladly forgo ever realizing some technique to get the work done and see that which lies within myself, emerge on to the canvas.
Just to know , what's going on inside. Before it's all over.
My first jars of acrylic paint arrived in early summer. I noticed when removing the lids most had foil coverings, but some did not. Whats that all about ? The thought did cross my mind , is someone pilfering paint before they ship it out ? Maybe it's just the fact that we are imperfect beings and make imperfect machines and so many jars a batch go unsealed by foil ?
I not know.
It irks me.
A big hurdle for me as far as getting used to working with acrylics was the management of water. I now have lots of gadgets and containers for keeping things wet.
As I have been told, I have been using lots of Titanium white. Much more then any of the colors.
Unexpected, I have found a great fondness for Burnt Umber. I love using it with just white paint. Working my way through a second five ounce tube of it and will probably buy a jar next time around.
Early fall is an odd time of year for me, it follows my, summer Art Fest, which happens three weeks in August, three weeks of uninterrupted painting. I did six paintings in my new medium this art fest. It wears me out. September, then, is often a very hard time to get out new paintings. I have no shortage of ideas, just lack creative energy to get it done, my head hurts. I grow tired at this time of my summer gallery, which is on my coffee bar next to my sliding glass doors and has great natural northern light in summer, provides a cool place to work in summer but the short days of fall provide miserable light and makes it difficult to paint after work.
So, i have an excuse to paint less.
My first acrylic painting started in my winter gallery, aka my messy chaotic garage, just as the Mohave grew nasty and hot, it was a frustrating work, the gallery was ninety six degrees fahrenheit and the only way to bear the heat was to have a big fan blowing, and i was using heavy bodied acrylics with no practice at all at keeping things wet.
Alright, so, my first attempt with acrylics was like painting with dry mud.
It turned out to be a primitive looking, worship of the sun painting. Fitting, I think, as a first painting in a new medium, marking a rebirth of sorts, in my art and my life.
I feel guilty when I think of my pastels, like leaving an old love, I want to do more pastel art, but just barely have enough time to do acrylics.
That troubles me. and I am torn a bit.
I am impatient right now, with the weather and my art. I want to get back into the winter gallery. I will move today, despite an unusually warm October. The winter gallery is my power spot. I am trying more now to see a set of paintings to do this winter , rather then taking one at a time. I see no signs of any artist block on the horizon , but my last painting took longer then usual to emerge, I know its not a big deal, but strangely, I fear artist block for the first time since i started painting.
I think I just long for those winter nights in my winter gallery with my tiny electric heater keeping things just warm enough.
Rarely, do I envision a painting in completion before painting, I know the feeling i am after and some basic elements of the composition but the creative moment arises on the canvas. I feel it has to , if I am to paint truly that which is deep inside me. I think i was better at reaching inside when I could barely paint a straight line, now that i can paint a few straight lines , I am getting leery of thinking too much ahead, handing over the painting process to the engineer inside, the production manager and all the horrid steps of painting and so on, and that scares the hell out of me.
The engineer has always promised more but never really delivered for me in life.
What I learned in my brief journey as a painter is that, I would rather just give birth all over the canvas, messy , sloppy, blood and all, falling into this or that, letting the work find it's way.
The birds are screaming alive now, about twenty minutes till sunrise, its a beautiful time to be here, it's approaching day light now, pretty soon my neighbors will be up and they will realize i am sitting on the front deck mostly naked.
My coffee is gone , so best for the peoples and all involved , i go back inside.