The process of this experiment turned into chaos when I tried too many new things at once. By chaos, I mean I almost lost my mind in the process, however the results are fantastic.

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Questions

  1. How can I paint a background that will enhance the quality of the image in the foreground ?
  2. Is painting on a circles better than painting on a square?
  3. Is it possible for me to create patterns that are duplicated?

Background

There was a lot of pre-thought out planning compiled into this series. I should clarify, by pre-thought planning, I mean pieces of thought which have been stirring around in my brain,  just so happened to come together to form a concrete item during the week of this experiment.

The use of the  pattern found in Posing For Truth and Circles and Seashells came out of an idea I stumbled upon while meditating during Yom Kippur services. Staring at the star of David, located at the front of the temple, I suddenly realized the true geometric beauty of the ancient symbol. I decided it would be a great starting point to make a pattern. The next day I created several patterns starting with the points of the star. I chose to create the patterns with three colors because I am spontaneous and I only had three colored markers with me at the time.

star of David pattern doodles


Take a moment to appreciate how effortless the images of the people are in Posing For Truth and Perfect People. Okay, now I can reveal the secret work behind this image. Dating back several months prior to this series, I had been exploring ways to most simply represent the human form in motion.

sketches  of climbers from Paris, Paraclimbing World Championship 2016

I was hoping to have stumbled across a working image  during my climbing series, but apparently it wasn’t the right time. The answer came as it usually does with art, in an unexpected and accidental manner.

final sketch of a simple human in motion

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Circles vs. Squares

For quite some time now,  I have been trying to find a circular canvas.  The circular canvas is an attempt to combat the issues I have with not knowing how to paint the background, especially when I get near the edges of a canvas. When painting,  I have a hard time not getting lost in the brushstrokes and usually end up painting over half of what I have already painted. There is a constant war between background and foreground at play. Anyway, edges seem to make this problem worse.  I literally  start painting squares and sharp edges when I get near corners. This is a great example of  how easily influenced my subconscious mind becomes when I am in the midst of a painting. So, when I visited Home Depot and saw a smooth wooden circle,  I immediately knew this was my chance to go for it!

The last element of inspiration for this series comes from a side project on patterns. One day I started messing around with a simple Instagram photo editing app and found out many of paintings look significantly  better when they are replicated three times. I believe the replication process enhances the idea I was trying to convey by reinforcing it. Also when I imply this specific replication technique of one image reflected, one image mirrored and one image  both reflected and mirrored; a depth and perspective forms out of what was a somewhat flat image.

pattern replication technique

I’m not the least bit surprised at how much this simple transformation made my paintings pop. I generally avoid creating anything that would have to be replicated for three reasons. The first being I get distracted and am very likely to paint something else when trying to replicate. The second is that I feel like tedious repetitive work in a painting is silly in the context of the modern times we live in. I believe if something can be captured better with photography and digital graphics then there’s no reason to paint it. The last reason may be perhaps the most important, the fact that my hands have a very limited capacity to paint and I never know how many minutes or days I have with them. So, painting something over and over again seems especially a waste of my time and energy. Despite this past resistance, I tried to break out of habit give replication a chance. In this series I tried to at least duplicate most of the image.

 Intended Method

  1. Prepare the wooden circles  with white Gesso.
  2. Paint the geometric background inspired by the star of David. While in some way trying to  duplicate the pattern.
  3. Paint the simple image of the human figure in the foreground

What actually happened…

Day 1 with some help from my furry friend

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Evolution of Perfect People

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Evolution of Circles and Snails

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Evolution of Posing for Truth ( need more photos*****)

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Final Results

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Conclusion

The extra planning that went into this project turned out to be well worth it. For the first time in my life I created a background specifically designed for what I knew would be going into the foreground! Painting on circles was also quit a success and definitely made dealing with the edges more of natural process. However ,the amount of Gesso which was needed to prime these surfaces was expensive and an annoying task. To answer the question of whether or not I have enough patience and stamina to duplicate my work: clearly it is possible, but the process was not the least bit enjoyable! In the future I hope to figure out a different way to duplicate things with less of a struggle. Until then, I am perfectly  satisfied using technology to replicate and pattern my images.

Inspiration for Future Projects

  • Wooden circles focusing solely on geometry
  • Making coffee tables out of the wooden circles
  • Leaving the wood background as is and incorporating the horizontal paneling into the project
  • Trying this method: paint something, rotate circle, repeat… we will see if I ever get to the center
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