Last week I went to visit several very good friends. Each stop revealed multiple works that I had painted. My style has been very different than most of that work in the last two years. While there is something really great about my newer drawing based work, I have been missing the layers evident in my more painterly style. I really had started drawing more as a way to work on my skills where I felt they were wavering. It was not that long ago that I wouldn't worry about the state of drawing so much because I knew that once I started painting I could make the work look like whatever I needed it to look like. I had kind of lost sight of the fact that the strictly drawing based work was an exercise. It is time to paint again. I want some more serious shows again.
With these last two thoughts in mind, I started at one of my sketchbooks during the middle of a class that I was monitoring on Saturday. I visited some cloud motifs that I had worked with a couple years ago. They were really a modification of the clouds in the old Cloud Constructor works, but with more of the express intent of making the clouds characters in their own right. I started crossing this imagery with the rain marks. Rain has always signified a sort of cleansing and rebirth to me. Perhaps it is like a continued sort of baptism? The rebirth brought me back to me child who is on the way. I started mixing the baby badger into the piece as well.
Finally I was able to get some real painting in the other night. My wife was asleep on the couch and I was listening to Ben Kweller ( I love pop music when I am working through new ideas. ) I took a panel that I had nailed together in attempts to entertain her little brother at one point. Side note: that plan did not work. I liked the shape of the pieced together wood and I thought that cloud forms would add a nice contrast to the rectilinear shapes making up the larger shape of the surface.
Slowly everything started to form in my head. The clouds and the rain are a way of thinking of media and ideologies which saturate our vision and thoughts. It is all one confusing cloud or blob. I began to think about my child. What are all of these extraneous bits of information going to feel like to a small child learning the ways of the world?