Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Winds of Progress

I've been gearing up for this years' show schedule. I know I have a lot of work to get done, and it always seems like there isn't really enough time to do everything that I need to do. Adding illness to the mix just makes for bad juju, but that is what I've had to deal with lately.

I've been coming out of it well though. I made myself a couple mixes, downloaded some mash-ups and have re-donned the headphones. Old Skool Mike is back on the scene.

I've been working a little bit differently lately though. Often in the past I have spent a lot of time getting my background worked out colorwise using a patchwork application that takes forever. Recently I've been looking at my work and thinking about what can stay and what can go. What is important to keep for the essence of the paintings but what just gets in the way and makes my pieces harder to read? So after looking through the Robert Motherwell book that Beth and I have, I started to mix some base paint in an old coffee can that has a top. So I've been using the blue ground that I mixed last week to fill in and get everything covered, almost like Bob Dacey's unifying purple wash, but more as a starting point. It's good to have it all mixed though instead of trying to work it off of the palette.

So in the last week I've really started to tighten up these two pieces. The one of the construction working birds and the robot up on stilts, and one with a robot running into power lines. Here is the first:

This piece has been on my board all day long, and as I was sitting in front of it, I really thought it had a long way to go, but stepping back from it and actually scanning it in makes me realize that it is really quite close. I'm trying hard not to make pieces more complicated than the subject lends them to be. Bad habit that I developed over 2008. I guess you could call that a resolution.

Anyway here is the second piece:

This piece has been cool to work on so far, because not only am I trying to work out of the can and keep things somewhat flat, but like Motherwell Iam trying to stand back further from the piece, use my whole arm, and not relly come in too far to define anything. Ultimately I would like this piece to mesh a more abstract expressionist feel juxtapozed with my figure. I feel like I have lost too much of what I thrived on in my painting classes in school and I am attempting to get a little bit of that back with this piece, hopefully leading to more like it.

I have two days off, so you can bet there will be more stuff coming up in the next two days.


1 comment:

Kelly said...

i heart where your construction working birds are going!