07 August 2013

Familiar Abstraction

This is my latest finished art journal page. Recently I've been working almost exclusively in acrylic paint (far different from my usual wildness of stick-everything-down mixed media approach!), and it's been a lovely experience. Since taking an oil painting class a year ago, I've been trying to move away from using paint directly from the bottle, instead mixing colors into something new and unique; this expansion of my color palette also helps my pages look less similar to one another, allowing me to experiment more with style and mood and achieve a wider range of expression.

This particular page was very simple, and is easily duplicated: using a ballpoint pen, I traced backwards letters using alphabet stencils (similar ones here), painted the negative space red, then created an abstract third layer using blue, pink, and red acrylic and thick white gesso. I love the movement of the outcome.

Abstract art is something I am really drawn to. Realistic paintings or sketches are impressive, but, personally, I find imperfect work much more enchanting and a greater representation and expression of the artist's inner world. I absolutely love Michelle Armas' paintings – her beautifully colored abstract work is cheerful, bubbly, and inviting. As an exercise two semesters ago, we were instructed to use nature as inspiration for an abstract piece, something that apparently inspires many abstract pieces. I'd love to continue to experiment with taking the familiar and manipulating it into a new world, much like macro photography opens one's eyes to the unfamiliar within the very ordinary.

What art styles are you drawn to? Why? I'd love to hear!


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