Painting: Trying Something New & Falling in Love with Jackson Pollock

Painted last week. It was the perfect remedy for the migraine pounding in my head, and a much needed stress reliever from the week's frustrations & fatigue.

I painted three in a span of about 4 hours.

I find it hard to do just one....once I'm inspired I have to keep going until it runs out. It usually takes 2-4 small canvases for it to dissipate, leaving me exhausted and wanting to sleep.

The first one I painted was for a friend. She asked me months ago to paint a depiction of life before & after salvation. I honestly find it hard to paint something when it's someone else's idea-I usually just do it "in the moment," -it's not something I force-so it took me a long time and a lot of quiet reflecting to figure out how to do it. I kept waiting for inspiration or some thought to spark a sense of direction, and it didn't come until last week.

As I was laying in bed praying for my migraine to subside, a verse from 1 Peter chapter 4 came to me. It talks about love covering a multitude of sins. My mind immediately started thinking about redemption & salvation. To me, they both represent love-the love that drove Jesus to the cross to sacrifice himself for humanity. As I reflected on this, I started to see colors-I saw a strip of black being covered up with all kinds of bright colors, which I took to represent life, and red & white interspersed among them-In Christianity, red represents Jesus' blood and there's a verse in the Bible that talk's about his blood washing us "white as snow" when we receive salvation & are therefore redeemed.

Finally having my inspiration, I swallowed an excedrin, made the boys lunch, laid Alex down for a nap, and settled myself in my room with my paints and brushes spread out around me. I got to work, first painting half the canvas black. Once that was done, I sat for a few minutes wondering how I was going to take the image of the colors I had in my head and transfer it to the canvas in front of me. It was then I thought I'd try something I hadn't tried before-splattering the paint.

It's something I've seen on other paintings, but never knew how to create that look myself. Not really knowing what I was doing I just started by putting paint on the brush, dipping it in water & just flicking the brush at the canvas.

Splat. Dip. Splat. Dip. Splat.

Realizing it how fun & simple it was, I just started literally throwing paint at the canvas, covering myself & the wall in front of me in the process. I did this for about half an hour, stopping to pick different colors, watch the paint float & glide down the canvas, cover more spots, and about halfway through I stopped to take this

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Still not feeling "done" I kept going until finally I had this

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I put that one to the side and feeling inspired by what I had just done, I grabbed another canvas. No particular thought or meaning in mind, I just saw an arrangement of colors and slowly transferred what I saw in my mind to on the canvas.

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As soon as I finished, another arrangement of colors came to mind and again, I grabbed yet another canvas and produced this

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I really enjoyed painting like this. It was fun, and somehow very liberating. I posted these in Instagram, and my friend Lindsay mentioned an artist I'd never heard of before, Jackson Pollock. (my Art History game is better than it used to be thanks to 2 Lit & Art classes, but I still have a lot to learn)

Intrigued, a Google search led to about two hours of reading about him, abstract expressionism, his works, and falling in love with his "all-over" style of painting. His paintings? Gorgeous layers of colors twisting & turning in all directions. Needless to say, I'm now a fan :)

"On the floor I am more at ease, I feel nearer, more a part of the painting, since this way I can walk around in it, work from the four sides and be literally `in' the painting." -- Jackson Pollock, 1947.

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20120707-081825.jpg (Full Fathom Five, 1947, photo credit: WebMuseum Paris)

20120707-082037.jpg (Number 8, 1949, photo credit, WebMuseum Paris)