Where do I start and where do I go? Having drafted a plan for my essay and leaving my three nude paintings behind until I have desire and a strong sense of idea where they are to go I have moved on to 4 paintings taken from sketches in my sketch book from 100 drawings in 100 days. Experimenting with what happens when I just get on and paint. There are so many decisions involved. Do I sketch out first? Do I use a brush? Do I use oils? Do I use a lot of oil as a flat colour or do I lay it on thick? Do I abstract my painting or do I try and get it as near to the reality as possible? The decisions are endless as I go on, and this is sometimes what stops me doing a painting in the first place, because I can’t decide. Do I change the way I am painting? Do I change my mind? So many choices.
The book I am reading is Van Gogh’s ear the true story by Bernadette Murphy. I bought the book because I admire Van Gogh. Love his paintings and love the south of France where many of his most famous paintings were painted. Van Gogh was quoted time me when I was in the careers office way back in 1985. I may have talked about this before in my blog but the Carter’s officer asked me what I wanted to do with my life? At the age of 15 I said I want to be an artist! His reaction was a shock. He was furious with me and asked me if wanted to turn out like Van Gogh cutting off my ear and ending up in a mental institution. He honestly did say that! I wonder if he can remember! Did he mean that all artists have mental health problems or did he mean if you become an artist you will have mental health problems problems? That is an essay in itself. So I thought this would be a good book to start with. As I am reading it I am thrilled to think that Bernadette Murphy has a fantastic way of writing how she feels and thinks about the artist and all the smallest of details she has worked out about Ban Gough’s life down to what he ate and where he even went to clean up. I am interested in the relationship Van Gogh has with Paul Gauguin. I am thinking as I am painting today something he said to Van Gogh apparently. Use your imagination. So here is my draft essay plan. Although I mention women in my plan because the other books I am about to read are dominated by women artists struggling to be seen as an artist but as we know with Van Gogh’s story during his lifetime he also felt it was a struggle to be seen.
Please do not judge these paintings they are works in progress and I have downloaded them for evidence of work.