Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Gothic Monument

A moderately busy day today. First I draw some more on a picture called "Now I've Tasted Love..." (Oh! I just have to abbreviate my titles when writing about them, they're just too long!) It was rather plain and definitely needed something. I had already transferred the drawing to the canvas, but it looks like I'll have to either correct that (probable) or start again on a new surface once I'm happy with the drawing. Unless you're 100% sure about a picture, it's best not to do it. Coming back later is easy and you'll have so many brilliant ideas to choose from that setting one aside for the moment, even months, won't be any loss. I'm sure I read that Dali's "Invisible Man" took many years to paint for similar reasons.

Onward then! On my first break at 10:40 I decided to go out for a walk. The past few days have been stressful and I needed to relax. The reminds me of last night's dream in which I was Jane Asher's boyfriend. I had a future vision about "four drums" and four levels of a house, it was Paul McCartney's house. I went to Paul and the prediction came true, but Paul, who had a wife and two young children, wasn't impressed and they all continued to play and have fun around the house. I told Jane about it when I got home and she also seemed unimpressed by my visions, and asked me to make her a coffee instead, which I duly did.

I mention that dream because I awoke from it and instantly remembered a discussion about art on here. I said that I thought that birdsong was art as far as birds were concerned. Kathy said hat bird calls are warning, for mating, or for other natural reasons; true enough. I noted though that even lone birds in cages sing, just as lone artists make art. To me this justified the analogy, and I wrote down that art (to humans) was evidence of a human's existence, created by another human for another. It underlines a key definition of art that it must be made by humans (although art made by dogs could be for dogs). I intend to write something on this.

During my walk I bought a 180cm long aluminium straight edge. It's amazing how many rules stop at one metre! This is a "plasterer's float" but will be good for working on my larger drawings. After that I started the modelling for another new picture, which I'll hereby not give the title to because it's rather long!

Instead I'll post a photo of the model, which this time is made in air-dried clay. It's a Gothic monument of self destruction, a ragged being wrecked by purely self imposed damage, done to elicit sympathy. This is the very start of a whole new painting.

This air-dried clay is called Claydium. It's nearly as easy to use as plasticine, and will soften again if wetted. That has up and downsides. I have used epoxy resin in the past to "varnish" these sculptures. Perhaps acrylic medium would work, but I'm wondering if the water would damage the surface.


Kathy said...

Very cool sculpture, Mark. Your idea of creating the 3-D form for what you paint is a good one. As for birds singing in cages ... well, they can't overcome their basic instincts ;)
Looking forward to your new work!

♠ Alex Pribnow ♠ said...

Nice! I see what you mean, needing something to keep the moisture out... in answer to your question, the epoxy types I use are Wilko two-part epoxy resin or a similar American brand epoxy resin, the name escapes me with it being at the bottom of my junk crate, but it's basically the same thing, cheap stuff with two parts. Wilko's only has a 2-minute application time, where the American brand has 10 minutes, but I'm sure there are other types with longer app times. I tried Jaw Juice as well but that was less workable than epoxy glue. I think most 2 part epoxies are pretty much the same. Araldite is also good with the measured dose, although more expensive. But if you're looking for a kind of waterproof glaze as an alternative to glue, you could always try Clear Tar Gel by "Golden Gel Mediums" sold in most art/craft shops. The Golden range does all sorts of texturising gels which dry transparent and are waterproof and cater for all kinds of textures (some stores have a texture chart with dried samples of each type to look at and check how they feel). You can buy them online easily and get them in larger bulk tubs too.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, by the way. =)

-Don said...

"...a ragged being wrecked by purely self imposed damage..." Have you been reading my diary? ;-)

Mark Sheeky said...

Don I really hope that's nothing like a portrait!

Alex thanks. I'm in Cheshire, Wilkinson is one of my favourite shops! The epoxy I used was an industrial one from a place called ABL Stevens, it's for resin casting so very liquid but sets really rock hard. Useful for painting with! I like Golden stuff and use a few of the GAC Golden media but I've not tried that Tar Gel. I must take a look in future. Thanks for the detailed info.

Kathy; if only I could paint as fast as I sculpt these teratisms! It looks better when lit correctly. Most of the time I make them so that they only have details and "good bits" when seen from the correct angle.