Monday, May 2, 2011

Architectural painting

I didn't plan to go back to painting and leave the paper arts projects, but I was inspired to work on an architectural piece by both the art and photography of Wendy Farrow and by the wedding of William and Kate.  I created the first piece on the day of the wedding using a mixed media approach, started with a vintage photograph of a castle which soon was transformed into a very impressionistic approach to Westminster Abbey.  This is a style I love, which I started a bit in my New Orleans paintings during the early 2000's.  I don't do realism, and in fact want to distort my buildings in some way so they are more dream like, evasive and moody.  I don't know why the red came up - but it did.  I tend to just go with the flow, work fairly fast and just let the piece dictate how it wants to look.  I used a combination of paper, gesso, acrylics and water colours on mat board, then used masking fluid to remove the paint in random ways. 
The second piece I did two days later.  This is a painting of a part of the Brooklyn Bridge as inspired by the movie Stay, and it's dream sequences of the bridge on a rainy night as experienced by the young artist, Henry Letham, as played by Ryan Gosling.  It's one of my favorite films in the entire industry, due to the story, and certainly the amazing cinematography. Henry's paintings in the movie always move me and come to find out they are photographs taken by a German photographer, Stefanie Schneider
For this piece I decided to use canvas since I'm using more and more layers of paint.  This one started out in acrylics and then I added layers of watercolour and glaze, once again used the removal of paint with the masking fluid, then went over with a glaze, wiped it off, Drew in the cables of the bridge in blue and black pen and then went over the engraved lines with pigment inks, wiping off the residue so only the lines held the purple and green inks.
There's a scene in the movie near the end where the bridge actually comes alive in Henry's mind and perhaps also in the mind of his psychiatrist  and they float and move.  I was trying to catch that element although the photographs are quite different from my painting. Here's a photo from the movie of the series of polarized photos by Stefanie Schneider.

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