Friday, February 26, 2010

The Vegan

The final idea for this composition came after ruminating on it for a few weeks. Sometimes paintings come quickly and I rush to the studio to get them down and other times...well.. they may take a while to congeal. I've been disatisfied with the 'usual' and wanted to try something different so the acrylics have been put away for now and the pastels are back in use. This medium is the most comfortable for me and my favorite of all.... there's no hesitation about mixing to get just the right hue or tone when painting because the rich color sticks are ready to pick up and apply to the surface.. Only a handful were used because the terra cotta toned ground pulls the painting together and shows through in many areas. I made the support ground with Colourfix textured primer that was brushed on. Some of the brush strokes show through too adding an interesting texture to the pig's hair and skin.
Influences came from paintings by Grant Wood and Thomas Hart Benton.....and strangely enough, the beautiful blackboard menus I've seen in local restaurants, cafes and a big chain supermarket that uses painted blackboards to advertise throughout their produce sections. I admire the religious icon paintings of the Renaisance as well.
The pig's eye portrays a different feeling than originally was going to be more of a sneer...but sometimes you just have to go with the flow.
When I showed this to two dear artist friends I got completely opposite reactions about the meaning ...

On a very personal note. One of my favorite Aunts passed away yesterday at the age of 80 surrounded by her loving family. When I was a kid she was the Aunt who always laughed and played with us. She was affectionate, funny and will be sorely missed. God bless and peace to you Aunt Joan.. I do hope we'll meet to play and laugh again.


Pam Johnson Brickell said...

I like this new piece, Karen, and your explanation of technique. I've not used pastel in many years and may enjoy a refresher workshop as it seems there are a lot of new techniques out there.

I'm so sorry to hear of your aunt's passing. I lost a favorite aunt a few years ago. So many wonderful memories, so many tears. My heart goes out to you. Her memory will bring you many smiles and a warm heart in days to come.

klp said...

HI Pam,

Sorry to get back to you so late..Thanks for your kind comments. Pastels really have come a long way. So many companies are catering to us now with new papers and panels to use.
I took a portrait workshop with Terry Ludwig one year and he has his own line of pastels that are really nice...they're rectangular rather than round..more edges to use. Let me know how your pastel work comes along I'd love to see it. Take care, Karen