In the last couple of years one of the things I have really been working on is trying to develop my painting technique and style.
I still want to make protest paintings, and I will still incorporate text, but I want my paintings to be less illustrative and more gestural. My previous style seemed to work, but I realised that I was really missing painting painting (if that makes sense?!). I am so excited by the materiality of the paint and its endless possibilities as a medium, and even though I'm not quite sure where that fits in to my work conceptually, it is an area I really want to explore.
After many years of working in acrylics, three years ago I decided it was TIME FOR A CHANGE! and upgraded to higher quality paints, extended my colour palette, bought a whole load of new brushes and started working with oils. I began exploring different techniques and ways of applying the paint. This way of working is actually much more intuitive to me personally as an artist, and is in fact similar to the way I used to work years ago.
Three years later I am looking at a lot of pieces which I don't want to exhibit, lots more of which have gone in the bin! But I feel I'm on the right path somehow...
Every now and again I love looking at other artists work purely for their mark-making, forgetting about ideas and content and purely enjoying looking at their use of paint. Here are a few I thought I would share: (I would love to be posting some of my own new paintings alongside, but they don't exist yet!)
‘The Teacher Sub A’
Red and blue faces….amazing! love how she paints
‘Study after Velazquez’s Portrait of Pop Innocent X’
All those dry brush marks, the direction and energy…Bacon manages to use paint to create something otherworldly, for me, he is one THE best adverts for the power of painting.
Simplicity of the figure in contrast to the rough/sketchy lines and squiggles of paint. I like the way Wilhelm Sasnal's work is often political but in such a quiet and understated way.
Man of the moment…
I started to like Hockney's work when I first saw some amazing portraits of his mum at the National Portrait Gallery. After that I saw a documentary which showed some footage of him painting some of his new landscapes – I was in awe of it! – just watching his handling of the paint. I love the bold, simple and confident quality of the line and how intuitively he paints these landscapes.
(Don't know the title of this!)
I’ve been working on some portraits for a while now, and came across Gainsborough through research, I keep returning to the images in fascination. When you look at the paintings up close there is such a contrast between the static porcelain like faces, and the sketchy playful mark making of the background and the fabrics, I love that about his work.
Love the ease and simplicity of Alice Neel’s style, her paintings have so much humanity and emotion.
Would have been good if I could have included some more women painters, why is it that so many of the famous ones are men? On that note...I'm off to think about my next painting.
Thanks for reading! xxx