Saturday, February 18, 2012

Molten Wax and Chilly Winter Days

February is an especially trying month. Battling the cold and sometimes the damp is a struggle. Well, sometimes it can be. The temperature hovers near freezing and bounces up and then down. Heating bills swell like the river will in the spring. I get a little cheap with myself and bundle up instead of building a fire. Maybe I am lazy. Maybe I am an environmentalist. Maybe I am just practical. Definitely, we are almost out of fire wood.

I've been trudging around the house in my ratty old grey sweater or, when I misplace it (which I often do) I  grab my ultra puffy bathrobe and wear that to keep warm. It's kind of a Canadian-chic sorta look.

I haven't been making much art these last few weeks... I've made some art, but not as much as I usually do. What I have been working on is this painting (photos below) of a moth. It's a textured painting. Multi-media...

It has evolved quite fantastically since I started it last summer. It was originally meant to be a painting of a garden of roses. I didn't like where it was going to I scrapped that idea and decided, on a whim, to dribble molten wax from a candle I had burning in my studio on the canvas. It was a random application. Once it was done and cooled I saw nothing special. I stuck it on a nail on the wall and forgot about it.

A few weeks ago, however, I took it down off the wall and looked it over. I still saw nothing but I started to apply paint anyway. Eventually what it was meant to be revealed itself. The wax had patterned itself into (in my mind) what appeared to be a moth perched on the side of a tree. All I needed to do was enhance the pattern. Add a full moon (of course) and just have fun with it.

I've been working on it in spurts. About twenty minutes at a time. A little here and a little there...

I am still fascinated with sparkles and shimmering paint. I am fascinated by the way light changes and effects a painting. I've been giving it layer after layer after layer of gloss. It takes weeks and weeks to achieve the effect I crave but these layers create such a depth of light I find it almost looks three dimensional. It is along the same vein of thought as this painting I titled Under the Full Moon (click here). I cannot begin to express how satisfying this is to me. It is a visual delight... gourmet food for my eyes. My heart sings when I look at these paintings. I shine a light on them... I take the light away. Everything changes. It's beautiful.

This work is not completed yet, but I wanted to show my progress anyway. These are just detail photos. It may be hard to see the full effect of the painting. Maybe you don't even see a moth. But I do. And I love it because I am, myself, a bit of a moth. I sleep all day (well not ALL day) and I flutter around all night in the dark.

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