Strokes and structure

Here are 2 of my recent large works

The top one is ‘Evening walk, Cruit’

110 x 160cm

The bottom one is ‘Ruined gables, facing West’ , 120 x 160cm

They were both painted during the same short period of a few weeks, about 4 or 5 months ago, in Winter.

They were both inspired by, and had their starting point in an evening walk at sunset, with the Western light, on the tracks around our home on Cruit

They are both unusual for me as they were mostly painted using brushes. And also the paint mixture was more liquid and had a higher proportion of oil, so the surface us more glossy than usual

Both have some strong diagonal marks as central structures to the composition.

The top piece is more balanced, with a fairly traditional compositional structure, with the mountain and horizon quite central.

The lower piece has a distorted, unbalanced structure, with a weird sloping section to the horizon on the left, and strong diagonal marks ambiguously reaching down from the pyramidal forms into the foreground

The brush marks were applied very quickly in both works. And there are dribbles and splashes

The colours in the top piece are warm and strong, but mostly complimentary and /or harmonious. Whereas the colour in the lower piece are strong and sometimes clashing, even bilious.

For me the results are very different. The top painting is comfortable, even comforting. The lower piece is unsettling, maybe anxious making.

I have never analyzed my work like this before. I almost never write any sort of artist statement. I would be very interested to hear what other people might think. About these paintings. Or about me writing about my own work. No holds barred! Please be honest. A diogue would be great. Thanks

3 thoughts on “Strokes and structure

  1. Hello Liz,
    Its good to write about work and, in my opinion, to keep it straitforward and direct! I love the energy and vigour in your work and these seem to be especially so. The more juicy, glossy paint quality seems to suit your handling. Being a contrary and cack handed painter (especially when I use oils) I rather like the gable ends with the triangle of air space sloping off to the left compositionally but the atmosphere in the other one looks good too. Thats my two pennorth anyway…but yes expressing your thoughts is good I reckon.

    • Oh I love your reference to your ‘cack handed’ness! Thank you. Someone on Twitter said about this piece yesterday (he’s an art instructor), that too many diagonals that don’t reach the edge of the picture plane can create tension. I found that very illuminating, as this painting actually makes me quite anxious!. I’m very glad that you feel the ‘more juicy’ paint suits my handling, that’s very interesting too 🙂

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