Kererū Morning – acrylic on paper, 130 x 180 mm, 2016.
“God is really only another artist. He invented the giraffe, the elephant and the cat. He has no real style. He just goes on trying other things.” Pablo Picasso
If the little kererū looks familiar, that’s because I sketched him earlier in the year with ink and watercolour. I’m not entirely sure how the magenta got into the trees ~ except that I was using it for the wings and when I wanted to make the greens pop, it was there on my palette and so I tried it and now I really like it. Note to self: keep trying other things.
Ebb and Flow – acrylic on canvas, 150 x 305 mm, 2015
“There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality.” Pablo Picasso
I have just finished a large abstract painting commission (this isn’t it ― I’m saving that post for another day). I love commissions. It was, however, quite an intense experience. I don’t know why but I find abstracts a lot more challenging than painting landscapes or birds or flowers… I guess that’s because the painting itself is the frame of reference rather than a photograph or something you can see in front of you. Which means that anything is possible. And I find that difficult, possibly because there are too many options. Some people are happy to start with an idea, a mood, a colour, a texture… I guess I’ve discovered that I like starting with an image. Of something. Anything. Anything at all.
Nugget Point, original photograph, 2013
Nugget Point, reference image (cropped, edited and flipped 180°)
So I decided to work on a little abstract just to move some paint around : ) and used a photograph taken a couple of years ago on the Otago coast as my starting point ― a photo of waves crashing against the rocks. It’s an image I’ve been wanting to paint for ages because the place left such an impression on me. I’ve called the painting ‘Ebb and Flow’ and it will be available for purchase in the very near future.