A third set of abstracted landscapes, exploring shapes and blocks of colour – more on the way.
A second set of abstracted digital paintings. I am enjoying the process of these peculiar landscapes and of course working with an abundance of colour is always good!
Recently being introduced to the shapely creations of Charles Sheeler as well as visiting an exhibition of Milton Avery has left me bubbling with inspiration. What was so interesting about Milton Avery’s work and the way the exhibition was laid out, showed that throughout his career his paintings started to boil down to its core essence of pure unfiltered blocks of colour. Avery become inspired by friends such as Mark Rothko and his once detailed paintings were abstracted into lovely shapes as he became noted as a master of colour. Seeing his art in person really feels makes it feel that way. Here is some initial abstracted digital paintings created after absorbing the work of both Sheeler and Avery. I very much enjoy creating this way, sometimes the paintings feel like a jigsaw puzzle with the puzzle being to always work out what colours work well together. It always feels cathartic when the overall composition feels balanced. More on the way and I am also excited to announce that a print store is coming very very soon.
This weeks Kick About of creative outputs from artists of all stripes is the sculptural work of Naum Gabo – Linear Construction No.2. I have never seen Gabo’s structural filaments before but the meandering weaves of fabric intertwined into curves provides such depth and movement I was fascinated by the displays. I tried to emanate the same flow of fabric with a disused project that otherwise would never see the light of day. These CGI rendered materials – originally hats, were warped, blended and mended back together in light of Gabo’s intricate meshes. I created a bunch more models of peculiar looking shapes for this prompt but not particularly liking how the material looked on those offerings – as getting those delicate weaves of fabric through to the renders provide difficult, I decided to only use a couple of those shapes and instead rely on injecting some life in a otherwise dead project.
Pools – Revisited
This time of year always reminds me of the time I found a relic of nature tucked away in a sleepy forest in the back arse of nowhere in rural Ireland. This photography series has meant a lot to me, and having a look back through the ever growing vault of images stored in many hard drives and SD cards, I was stalled again when scrolling through the abundance of images captured from that special place. Inspired by it yet again, I dived back in to showcase the colour, light and reflection of the portal like water that danced as drops of snow lapped its surface in little meanders and swirls.
Short Film: Flowers of Fire
When I seen the prompt for Kick About #40 over on reds Kingdom I wanted to see if it was possible to make an animation using the same analogue technique of scraping patterns into black painted glass and using the magic of long exposure to produce a time-lapse of images to see the growth of each burst of light. It was possible – however my original efforts were undesirable and left things a bit muddled. Instead I tried to opt for something simpler by taking photos of each glass setup in pin prick focus and another in a diluted blur to then sandwich both the images next to each other so that a burst of light pops with a simple hard cut in the edit.
I wanted to mimic the life force of a firework display and have the festivities start off slow to gradually bubble to a climax before the the lights fade and the sound of people are no longer completely drowned out. Truth be told I made things harder for myself by shooting each image in 4K and was left scratching my head as to why it was originally painfully slow to edit this short film, by changing the resolution of each image to something my laptop could handle and reimporting, it was a complete joy to edit further. It was the kick in the arse I needed to get on with things and to remember the joy of seeing a short film through its end, lets make it on time for the next one.
Pools @ ArtClick Ireland “Full Irish” Online Art Exhibition
Delighted to announce one image from my art photography series entitled Pools has been selected to be a part of the “Full Irish” online exhibition as part of Art Click Ireland. Art Click Ireland being the largest online platform for Irish art I am thrilled to be a part such an eclectic mix of artists utilising all mediums. Click the link below to be emerged within the exhibition and see some great art – all from the emerald isle.
“Full Irish” Online Art Exhibition
Low Dense – Brian Retunberg Inspired Painting
This weeks Kick About prompt over on Red’s Kingdom is bursting with vivacious pallets of colour in response to the vivid painting of Brian Rutenberg – Low Dense.
When I was an ambassador for University one hot summer similar to the melting heat in the UK at the moment I was tasked with taking down the graduate shows of the students that proudly presented their creative work to their family, friends and fellow students. I spent a few weeks dismantling the makeshift wooden stages, pulling out nails and painting over the brightly coloured stripes and symbols that students designed to present their work in theme with their creations.
One task that I had to do was take large painted canvases that students had painted on and throw them into the skip near the smokers shed where I spent many lunch breaks laughing and smoking my lungs out with my friends and classmates. It always saddened me to know that some students would rather dump their work no matter how large the canvas was, so instead of giving them the heave-ho into the trash I told my thrifty friends of the free large canvases that they happily decided to take back to their uni homes and upcycle to their hearts contents, painting and drawing what they please.
I kept the largest canvas for myself, Dripping in sweat carrying this beast down the iconic Rochester hill and ended up sandwiching it into my tiny uni bedroom. I never did anything with the canvas for years – it has since followed me along with two house moves. I have had ideas, I cut out all the silhouettes I kept from life drawing classes and thought about doing a collage of all of them together on the large canvas, but never did but I always knew I would when the time was right.
I have always loved Rutenberg’s kaleidoscope of colours, with the blocks of different variants of hues having such an immense power of depth to them. I thought it would be the perfect chance to finally let loose upon this canvas and use the many tubes of paint that I have stashed from many Christmases gifts that otherwise have been left to gather dust. I couldn’t think of any better way to spend a hot day – sitting outside in the heat with a cold beer or two and painting away in the garden. It was a therapeutic experience to say the least. I think I may have to figure out how to make my own canvases.
The Age of Aquarius
This weeks Kick about over on Reds Kingdom is a delight of colour and symbolism! Firstly, I was gobsmacked by the age of Aquarius song from the musical Hair. It left the hairs standing on my arms with the booming lead singer’s voice being absolutely phenomenal. If this show ever returns to live audiences I would love to see it! The “hippie” people of this era wanted to show their respect and love for the earth and focus on the world around them, while doing it as a group effort to show a sense of community and togetherness. Aquarius is an air sign, and as a fellow air sign myself, they are known to be creative, free spirited, and always seek clarity.
The symbol for Aquarius being the ‘water bearer’, who eternally gives life and spiritual food to the world, while also washing away the past and making room for a fresh start is usually depicted as a mighty figure pouring water from a vessel onto the earth. When seeing the image of the water bearer, I wanted to focus on a previous experience surrounding water that ignited the Pools film from the Eugen von Ransonnet-Villez prompt, which gave me more respect for the earth and the little wonders that happen sporadically, if you are open enough to find them.
These photos show a snapshot of a spectacle that was for my eyes only, where a trickling of snow was melting and forming a mirage of colours in a shallow lagoon of water. It was a joyous occasion to just sit and watch this natural occurrence, and with its dancing display, it allowed me to stop worrying about everything and what the future holds and just be here in this moment. I think experiences like that are important for grounding you and bringing you back to your present reality, where worry has no place, as the hippies in Hair embodied this physicality here and now by dancing and moving their bodies like water…”
Pools: Experiments that didn’t make the cut
I completely forgot about these experiments that never seen the light of day when creating the pools film. I thought about possibly interspersing short elements of treetops that I filmed and have these otherworldly orbs float amongst and behind the tree trunks to encapsulate and cocoon the texture, colours and nature with the forestry into mini universes. These orbs were created by using the filmed footage from the Pools film and turning it into image sequences and applying them to spheres within Maya, then adding lots of depth to them by applying bump and displacement maps. Displacement and bump maps basically calculate the white and black of texture maps within a 3D space and in turn raise or decrease the geometry to extrude and add depth, without these maps the sphere would have been a basic sphere. As I was editing the pools film I knew they weren’t going to make the cut and it was best to leave it be. Still enjoyable to play around with though! Especially with its uncertainty and since the filmed footage is basically plugged into the spheres and changes frame by frame it would have been really interesting to see what happens when finished rendering I can imagine those water ripples causing Synesthesia like effects. Maybe something will happen with them in the future, even to just full-fill my curiosity…