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.