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I was trained classically and after years of painting hyper-realism, I decided to move away from this genre because I wanted to find more of the essence of what I was doing; it was a search for more honesty in the mark-making. I became unhappy with the inevitability of the final image.

I decided to take all the … Read More
I was trained classically and after years of painting hyper-realism, I decided to move away from this genre because I wanted to find more of the essence of what I was doing; it was a search for more honesty in the mark-making. I became unhappy with the inevitability of the final image.

I decided to take all the content out, and reduce everything to its basic forms, i.e, light and shade, background, middle ground and foreground. Colour became much more important - the way one colour behaves in the presence of another. Blue, for example, is made more blue by the presence of its opposite - orange. I wanted to purify the visual experience to its essentials.

Instead of refining every mark, as you would in realism, I decided to keep the spontaneity and boldness of the statement, by techniques such as optical mixing of colour, by loading of the brush with multiple colours, and apply the brush in one stroke.

This created a revolution in my work. By taking out all content it reduced it to the visceral essence of its production, without the encumbrance of its conveyance.

What I’m looking for in the work is a freshness of approach, whereby the painting is made quickly with expressionistic intent, and spontaneous decisions, so the overall effect is a painting that is as lively and as beautiful as possible.

Music is very inspiring: For example, Wagnerian beauty is dark, heavy and full of emotion - black tempered with sienna, vermillion and gold. Or by contrast, the lightness of Debussy can be expressed as lemon, orange, and viridian. These seem opposed to each other but are, nonetheless, both expressions of beauty.

There are so many similarities between visual and audible art forms. The dark passages of paint are like base notes, light accents are treble, and swirls a far off saxophone drifting through the window.

When marks made by the brush are given a shadow it creates the illusion that they are objects in space, rather than flat marks on a surface. This adds further energy and movement to the paintings, making the marks appear to leap out of the canvas. Read Less
Member since: Jan 15, 2012