Friday, January 31, 2014

This painting fall in line better with what and how I want to say. The overall work is loose but not to the point of pure abstract. The mind still can grab on to some identifying features and shapes. I employed the lights and darks throughout to maintain drama with lighting. High contrast, yet soft in places. I call this "Restaurant Interior' Its 11 x 14", acrylic on 200# archival paper. ©2014 rpotak 



Friday, January 17, 2014

People ask me how long it takes me to do a painting. I know what they mean, but to that question there is no timely answer. The question does not relate to art. Maybe making a ceramic bowl or quilt, or something in the craft arena it would, but in the arts, as with dance, music, theater, painting, etc. it has no relevancy.  Time has no meaning in the creation of art. Art exists, when it is done.
 I personally respond to that question, with, "My art takes as long to make as it does to say what I need to say, and  not even I know the answer to that" ~ russ potak

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

I am starting to grow weary of the same old, same old. I'm referring to painting.  I feel that there is a "been there done that kind of feeling lately".  I think I have reached a point where I need to launch out with more to say than mere subjectivity. I find subjects in and of themselves starting to bore me. Although, there is good news in this for me.  A new approach. To paint, because I love to paint. To do. The mere act of painting is the thing. Not so much simply just the subject anymore, but rather the inner most expression of the overall painting. The excitement that spawns from the paint wandering in an exploratory manner seeking to uncover more that just a good representation.  The subject being merely the vehicle.  I feel I am growing weary of representational renderings in paint. I therefor, am striking out in this new year, with a  more determined attempt to explore, to uncover and reveal things about my process. Things that I use to  relegate to the back seat in favor of painting a scene, a subject, or a thing. Not that I will not use subjects any longer, but it is just that they will be merely vehicles for getting to where I need to go in my art. And on occasion, I may paint those again, if the spirit moves me to do so. The end result in my painting will not be of the surface qualities, but rather an inward expression.  For all of you, who are familiar with my old more subjective impressionist style, .. I still have plenty of works done from my "Subjective Period" on the market.  A good amount of them can be found on Etsy, while they last. But that era in my art, is closing. I must press on. Newer works will emerge, and I have no idea where they will take me. That, my dear friends, is what its really all about. The exploration. The process. The journey. All things change. I know I am.

Monday, January 13, 2014

I am achieving what I need as I utilize a more free and unrestricted application of the medium. I find the letting go approach, so much more in touch with my "hearts eye" rather than my heads eye. The essence of what I need to say, comes out easier and more in tune with my soul and its need to express the things that go on inside, and inspired from things without. 
Landscape with Green
16 x 20" 
acrylic on canvas
©2014 russ potak

Sunday, January 12, 2014

'WOODS' 
16X20"
acrylic on canvas
This is one of the first works I have done in moving toward a more internal relationship between me and the outside world. I feel I need to get closer to it and one of the ways I feel I can accomplish this is through a more expressive approach in the mediums I use. The representational exactness or similarities may fade more into the background but the force and life of the essence from which the inspiration was derived will come forth, and not be hidden as before. This is just the first steps I am taking with this, and this painting touches upon that concept, ever so lightly.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

As of late, I am beginning to view things a little differently. I'm not sure if its because I have been painting for so long, or maybe its the way I am beginning to understand why I paint in the first place.
 A fan of mine on one of my sites caused me to re evaluate why I would paint something in the first place.
I had taken what I thought was a very complete photo of an inspired scene. It was very moving and I composed the shot very well. I believe I captured the essence of that moment well with my lens.
 After posting it,  I was asked the question, if I was going to paint this? That is when the wheels in my head started turning in regards to that question, which started to  perplexe me greatly. I felt, that I had already said it, in a photograph.  To paint it would be redundant. What more could I possibly add to this than what I believe I had successfully extracted from it with a photograph. Its that all painting is I thought? Just transfer what I see to paint? To just say it in paint rather than some other medium? It that all painting for an artist is all about. To just render the thing in paint and say, now I have it in paint as well as a photograph?
This caused me some thought and an assessment of why I do paint.
  I know know that photography stands alone. Its medium is what it is. It works well.
Painting is what it is and it works well. The two should never really cross paths and compete. There is no competition as technology will win hands down now, and even more in the future with image manipulations.
 I know now that the purpose of an artist is much greater that the technology that races ahead like an unleashed torrent of cyber matter. I do not want to reveal what is already common and known, but rather what is not. I find myself being drawn to the inner life of things that are beneath the veneer of sight and sound,  and the subsequent representation that we take for granted of associative imagery. I have finally come to know that I will use photography as a medium for stating and revealing the magic of what is before us. The beauty of nature, the creation before us that presents itself on a daily basis. The incredible compositions that emerge from the light and drama on this planet.
 And I know something else now. I have a renewed sense as an artist to speak from within me, to say the things that come from me in response to the above mentioned wonders. I shall paint from within the "me" that must purge my response to these things. I believe now, I feel a sense of liberation, in not having to tell the story with the shackles of representation. What comes forth, will probably be more expressive now. More abstract, yet not really. As I think I am beginning to see, there is no abstract if it comes from a reality of inner self. That is as real as it gets.  If I translate that into paint, is then is that not what I really see and feel? No, not abstract, .. but a true and correct representation of my inner self and response to the world of within and without. The viewer may connect, and may not. To some it might be very real, and to others, yes, ... pure abstraction. That is okay. Its meant for touching on a one to one basis, and yes even to all if that is so. For now, that is where I am heading in my art.  I will certainly share more thoughts on this as they emerge.

Friday, December 27, 2013

The last few days here have been producing beautiful snowfalls. This is all it took to inspire me to get to work on my impressions of the seasonal wonder. Using the images I witnessed as well as the feeling and impressions, I painted this 11x14" acrylic.