Project: Winter ‘Seasonal Series’
This seasonal painting follows the same concept of earlier pictures in the series by imitating the life cycle. Having just finished the Abstract section and knowing that I wanted to complete this picture in that style, I decided to use some straight edge to indicate a room in the warm with Winter outside. Death is also scratching at the window, so the hands are again featured. I wasn’t sure whether or not the combination of styles would work but I think it does. The traffic light theme is indicated with the cup and saucer (red) and below it yellow and green beneath. As well as imitating Malevich’s use of red I included black as this echoed (for me) Stendhal’s La rouge et le noir, which are themes in life, i.e. passion and propriety. In my painting red could be taken for life, black for death. There are other things to read in the painting too.
The blue line (life blood) runs parallel with the ‘road of life’ and ebbs into the hands and trees to form veins and branches at the same time in the area through the window which is beyond death. This area could be interpreted as some kind of afterlife or a place for decay and regeneration.
The winged chair on the left is looking both inward to the room and outward through the glass panel at the same time, and I liked the shape for that reason.
Unusually for me I did a number of sketches in my sketchbook before deciding on the eventual composition.
I don't know if one is required to give an explanation of paintings, I suppose they should speak for themselves. but I felt this did require some narrative. I used the technique learned for the straight edge exercise and was pleased with the result, the canvas, as I expected did not have the same problem of "picking up". Using two styles in a painting is something that might be heeded but in this particular painting I felt it was the only solution to the problem of indicating a winter theme which also doubled as something "beyond", i.e. beyond the glass and a place beyond understanding. I have spoken to other students on Google Hangout and the painting was received with some trepidation and sense of chill. This of course pleased me.
Check and Log
- When you have completed your winter painting, compare it with the other paintings you have done as part of this parallel assignment. Do the paintings you did previous look better or worse than you remember?
To be honest about the same.
- Are there things about the paintings that might help you with the next Season’s painting?
I feel I have learned a lot from this series because I have used different styles and techniques for each one. Surrealism for the first, semi Cubism for the second, Expressionism for the third and Abstraction for the final painting of the series. Each continued the theme without each painting necessarily looking like part of a series, which I consider would be rather dull.
- Are you pleased with your interpretation of winter? If not what would you do differently if you were starting again?
I am pleased with what I have done, I could have chosen various ways of tackling it and might have chosen heavy impasto using a large brush with angular brushwork to indicate the harshness of the subject matter.