Friday, 14 August 2015

RECURRING THEMES THE BIRTH OF STYLE

I was reading the blog of one of my favourite mentors today. Karen Margulis was talking about her "UFO" (Un Finished Objects) pile. Read her blog here. Of course all artists have a pile of work unfinished for various reasons, and the longer you are an artist the bigger the pile grows. I'm long overdue for checking mine, and I know there are saleable gems in there that just need a couple of tweeks. I love Karen's phrase "grow as an artist". But I digress.

I've spent time lately thinking about my recurring themes. If you've followed me for long you will recognize them. Mountains - Water - Flowers. I experiment quite a lot in all sorts of areas including subject matter, but I always return to those three. Is this good or bad I ask myself?

I'm an eclectic individual with a non-traditional life, so it comes as no surprise that I have trouble sticking with one style, but is this a clue? When I'm studying the masters I like to Google their name "xyz paintings" go to the images tab and take an overall look at their subject matter and colour palette. It's a mind blowing experience that I can get lost in for hours. Of course Google will also pull up a mish mash of copies and vaguely related matter, but in general the first few lines of images are that artist's most popular paintings. I wonder if Rembrandt had Googled himself if he would say "yikes all my work is so dark, I should add some sunshine" or "Wow! I love my rich dark tones and emerging faces".

Have you tried Googling your own paintings?

"Sea Dean" brought up a retrospective look at my work, very representational in palette but not in my current, more painterly style.
"Sea Dean paintings" (pictured) gave a different view which was sweet, subtle and fresh.
"Sea Dean Artist" gave a wonderful eclectic warm and expressive collection with some really weird wild cards.

Armed with this new information about myself I was curious what image I would prefer to represent me and as you see, I chose the one with more subtle colours, expressive brushwork and a touch of sweet. Perhaps that is just what I'm craving in my life at the moment, but maybe ..... just maybe ... it's a glimmer of an emerging style.

I would be curious what your thoughts are on style, mine, yours, the masters. Please add a comment below.

Pushed now, to give an example of my emerging style, I have chosen this painting.

THE RIVER
Available at Daily Paintworks