Sometimes I like to paint a subject that is out of my comfort zone and use colors that give me a hard time. I choose subjects that require a different form of drawing, drawing that can be a bit restricting in nature. Subjects that call for a different approach, a bit more planning. The figure, with all my years of sketching, is quite simple, so this past month I have turned to buildings for my challenge. Red brick buildings with strong lighting to spark my appetite for color. Red has always given me a challenge, not sure why. Red roses scare the hell out of me.
Red brick buildings seem to be the perfect subject. One painted red was even more of a challenge. A scene I see every evening, the back of the buildings behind my studio, seemed perfect. I took to watching them as the sun set each evening, painting them in my mind. Mixing colors in my head and deciding how much shadow I wanted. I remember once seeing wash hung out to dry and thought how that could add to the life of the place. When I lived in New York City I remember wash lines strung from building to building. Always wondered how those lines were put up. I'm from an era when wash lines were an every Monday thing. Why Monday is another question.
This new subject thing was raising memories and questions I hadn't figured on. Did not think I'd be able to think about other things while working on a painting of red brick buildings, but there I was, relaxing and settling into my own world. It's where I can relax and be at peace with myself and the world around me. Paintings that should be done in a day or two always take a week. All those questions that a painting raises, and the time to answer them... Especially when there is only my own thinking that is there to address them. Maybe I wasn't day dreaming back in grade school, maybe I was solving problems…? No, I was day dreaming. Day dreaming about being the fastest gun in the West. The man who cleaned up Dodge City.