Saturday, May 3, 2008

The Line Up (ii)

The Line Up (ii)
Oil on Canvas Panel

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You know, so far I haven't felt inclined to anthropomorphosise any of these still life studies - until now. It occurred to me in the night, that the reason I am so compelled by the little espresso cup especially, is for the same reason I was compelled by the little Amish boy standing slightly away from the others in 'Amish Schoolhouse' (below)

Amish Schoolhouse
Oil on Canvas

There's something quietly confident about this little guy with his hands in his pockets, levelling his gaze straight at you. Even though you can't see his features, you know he's looking at you - analysing you, summing you up.

Back to the cups though, I was experimenting with backlighting, and although I'm not too pleased with the way this one came out, it's a new way of looking at the same subject, and I think it's healthy to challenge yourself in this way. I'll have another shot at it later. Maybe the reason I'm not getting bored with the same subject (like I normally do) is the sense of an underlying drama, or dialogue in these inanimate objects. I think it's a very human thing to interpret meaning into the things we see, to attach some romantic (in the classical sense) idea to things to help us make sense of things.

I'm reading Edward Abbey's novel, 'Desert Solitaire' at the moment, and his resistance to this very tendancy (with respect to the desert) connected with this musing in the night, and compelled me to write about it today.

I'm also 2 chapters into Paul Dorell's brilliant book, 'Living the Artist's Life', which I already highly recommend to anyone working in the arts, or who has to put up with a crazy artist in their life.

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