Mixing a thousand colors and placing a couple thousand strokes in just the right place on my canvas takes a lot of strength and time. The strength is in holding the hand still to paint an eye, or a tree branch. A millimeter can change the feel of a painting by changing the expression the artist is going for. A tree branch can hold the grace of a ballerina or be a lumbering ox. Studying the beauty of a woman can raise a simple landscape to the heavenly place we dream about. How an artist sees makes the difference between a masterpiece and simply marks on a canvas. We train our eyes to see with passion. A couple sharing a meal in the shade of a tree needs the artist to see lasting love and affection when the couple has fifty two years together. We see through our own experiences and dreams when painting.
My paintings are more detailed than most impressionists because I have more of a story to tell, more feelings I need to share. Even in a landscape I want people to see and feel what I saw and experienced while I was there. The multitudes of greens in a field of green, the tiny flowers on the plants we call weeds one day then wildflowers the next. Bees with stingers, look but don't touch, fly about from flower to flower reminding us of lessons our parents instilled in us as curious toddlers. A landscapes is more than a simple painting of the land around us. A grasshopper reminds me of a boy sitting in a field attempting to draw a grasshopper eating away at a leaf. Those thoughts cause me to reach for a smaller brush to add a leaf in just so.
Painting is more than pretty colors and wild brush work, its living through past experiences while being in the present. I so admire artists who can be so loose and so energetic with their paintings. They inspire me. Yet, when I try to be like them my own experiences flood in and the small brushes come out.
I haven’t found that grasshopper I started on again yet, but some day.