Most recent of my “Conversation in the Middle of the Day” paintings have a little more variety in the color, but only a slight variety. What I mean by a slight variety is that I’m taking different colors and slicing them in half in terms of value. Then I add another color to them. So I’m getting that kind of the difference in the blues. In these particular paintings shown here, you can see the variation in the blue background behind the people.
The background color is a darker version of that blue or a lighter version of this blue. When I get into the the shadows, the color shadows are getting more pronounced in some places and less pronounced in others. But the important thing is that the colors are all being mixed in pools of color. It is this pool of colors that makes up almost all of the colors in these paintings.
Sometimes you’ll see earth colors and they’re not made from earth pigments. They’re made of combinations of colors which some people might call mud. But they’re not mud. They’re really actually colors unto themselves. The black line in the figure work is thinner in areas, allowing it to mix with these pool of colors.
So what I want sometimes is the color to go into the black line and I will use my my Dr. Martin pigmented ink. This allows the colors to go over the the fluid acrylic creating yet another color. So as one colored goes on top of another color, it’s making a new color, but it’s a different medium.
As I work on these “Conversations in the Middle of the Day” paintings, I’m realizing that I just have the need for more color and patterns. These are elements I can relate to artistically. But I also try to relate part of the story into the patterns. And this is the story of the people in these pictures, the complexity of the people. The complexity of the patterns and the complexity of the color go together.
Telling the story in an abstract manner has always been the ultimate challenge in these paintings. The painting must work as a pattern in the colors; they have to work as a unit. The repetition of color is still important to me, but maybe they’ll be slightly different in each color pattern. You may think it’s the same, it’s just slightly different.
Sometimes when colors are overlapping, like with with the color in the inks, we’re looking at it in terms of creating another color that doesn’t exist in in the painting. Together, all of these elements in the painting work to create a monumentality.
In other words, the areas outside the lines (the negative spaces) are the shapes. Creating the shapes are very important. Part of that monumental feeling is the people and their size: the scale is still heroic proportions.
In the painting below I’m working with a really bright green. If you look closely, the figures are casting a light green shadow. But it’s very subtle. The subtlety is more important in this part of the series as it as it’s lending itself to the story of these conversations in the middle of the day. When I was painting “Conversations in the Night,” the black was very important in the background to bring up the shapes.
In these paintings I’m focused on the color pools. I use two or three or four colors in the pool and come up with another color. I may even possibly adding a white to bring in a blending quality. And sometimes bringing in a dark, dark blue (like a Prussian blue) or sometimes just the black. This brings color into the black lines itself.
These paintings are more and more about the texture of the paint. Even though the paint is thin, there is still some texture happenting. This is becoming more and more important in the whole series, whether it’s night or day or afternoon or whatever is going on. The texture along with pools of color that overlap the linework and vice versa continue to shape this series of paintings.
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