December 18, 2009

View from Red Beach
8" x 10" oil/panel
Back to Red Beach this morning, thinking about what it means to paint abstractly. I love images where a few deft strokes convey the essence of a scene. When "looking" deepens it becomes "seeing." Shapes define meaning while details take a hike. I find this happens spontaneously when I am in a carefree but focused state of being.
This morning I returned to the same spot where I painted yesterday. The sky was dark as some rain clouds passes overhead. A brilliant rainbow arched over the sea and surrounding hills. It would have been difficult to capture this eye candy and, besides, my eye was drawn to the sun as it hit the cliffs across the water opposite.
The thought of painting abstractly this morning became more a concept dominating my experience and not what the painting wanted. Plus -- call me indulgent -- I just love making those brushstrokes! Still, this piece is not overworked with detail; hopefully, there's just enough. I especially like the sun effect on the simply painted cliff.
On the way home, after my swim, an idea for a book of paintings and prose occurred to me. A comparison of Vieques and Northern Michigan, the two places to which I've committed my artistic heart. Many people who travel here straddle two worlds of heat and cold -- What do they have in common? How do they differ? It seems a whole new body of artwork is brewing in me. Yes!

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