I am still in the planning stages of my new body of work. I have managed to collate lots of source material to work from, but now really need to get stuck into trying to pull everything together.
I have vague rather than definite idea of how I am going to put the seemingly disparate elements into a single composition. This is one of the challenges of the painting process that I most relish, and which I have addressed to varying degrees in the past.
One of my recent paintings, ‘Knoll’, was based on a local ghost story. The main structure of the painting needed to be a staircase. As the imagery was being constructed from the toys from my childhood I opted to use this (Skelator's lair from He-Man?) as a starting point:
I wanted to use elements from both sides of the structure so ended up completing this large scale sketch (two pieces of A1 paper) as a way of integrating the preferred imagery from each section into one cohesive whole:
This sketch was then transferred onto canvas to create an anchor for the remaining imagery to work around:
Acrylic on canvas
This was quite a labour intensive way of working, particularly when undertaken the large scale sketch. However, it did make the painting of the image on canvas much easier. Problems that arose with composition were resolved in the sketch, and it helped to hone my observational drawing skills.
I am very likely to employ a similar method of working in my new body of work in order to exploit the unique shapes that are created by the integration of imagery.
I am hoping to start putting some of my ideas onto canvas over the coming weeks. I am quite excited about this new body of work. Based on local scenes past and present, it is an idea that I have had floating around for a few years but have only just got around to really developing.
Using buildings and city structures as source materials is a new subject to me. It will be interesting to see what problems I encounter, how I resolve them, and if any of them will get the better of me!