Sunday, December 20, 2009


A busy day today. First I read a quick bit of philosophy, which is useful for any artist! Then I decided to be more careful about the quality of different jobs and concentrate on one thing, allocating time strictly to maximise efficiency. I found the foamboard positives and painted one in acrylic then applied gold dust before sticking it to a prepared surface. I'll post a picture of this mixed media artwork on my blog on Christmas day.

The second Gethsemane study is done too, and shown below. This picture is about a moment of choice. Last year I thought that a relationship with art and a woman at the same time was impossible. I decided to paint this romanticised dichotomy. What is the story of Christ in Gethsemane but an allegory about a single moment realisation? The painting ends positively though, with love.

The first draft was rather bare so I added some trees. There are a few things to resolve; whether the trees should be deep red or turquoise like the sky (note; this is an underpainting study, not the final colours). The lake reflection needs to be darker too, but on the whole I'm satisfied enough not to paint a third study. When dry I'll add more to this. It's important that the study is as close as possible to the desired underpainting.

In the afternoon I began a dark underpainting to a small picture about feeling distant from someone who was once close. The picture began with a sketch, then a plasticine model of the plant object, lit from above. A night photograph was located and composed.

The "dropped" photograph showing a harmony relationship between plant and moon was necessary to reinforce the meaning. The vanishing points for the photo were based on the background. Clouds were added to the sky to break up the wide flatness. When finished the colours here will be very subtle purples and oranges. This picture is smaller than the study above.


Kathy said...

Mark, You made some great decisions in the second Gesthemane study. I thinked you solved a number of problems that you encountered in the first one. I'm impressed with your meticulous analysis as your proceed toward the final painting. That explains the masterful quality of your work. This painting contains a powerful message that most anyone can relate to. I'll be very interested to see how the smaller study develops as well. Thanks for posting these!

-Don said...

Mark, thanks for sharing your process. I like that you have several things going at once and how much thought you put into each. I look forward to seeing your Christmas posting as well as these studies being brought to fruition. Happy Creating! -Don