Paintblog, Late Feb, some works-in-progress

I know what you’re thinking, Whoah, three posts this month, and two of them actually have substance? Whoah. Well, don’t worry, it’s not a trend or anything…yet.

This entry concerns three two* older paintings that have had some new work.  Neither of them are, to my mind, finished yet, but if I waited until stuff was done I’d, um, never get done.  Or something like that.

First up we have the latest, the picture of the lake with the islands or far shore.  It looked like this when we were last here.

Well,I added the ground under the trees.

And then I added some details to the greenery

It shifts the viewpoint a bit, but I like it anyway.  I then got rid of the light area near the bottom of the canvas–I didn’t want a place to stand–and I hinted at the parts of the islands that were under the waterline.

It occurred to me, then, that these could be three of the Walking Islands  that I have painted in the past.  (Mostly on canvases now owned by others–well, that’s a hint.)  Should I emphasize that, somehow, by making the surface of the water transparent?  After thinking about it a bit, I decided no, and added some pattern details to the water.

(Apologies for the wildly fluctuating levels of color and contrast, I’m still figuring out Camera-Raw.)  (Also, I should note, I’m an idiot.)

And that’s how that stands as of now.  I kind of like it; it’s pleasant and I don’t mind looking at it.  It’s still lacking something, I just don’t know what it is yet.   You may see it here in the future, and you may not recognize it then.

Our next work, when we last saw it, looked like this.

I stared at this work months with no ideas–is it a tree? An explosion?  Some kind of giant worm?  A supernova, about to wipe out all life on earth?  Ha ha, of course it couldn’t be anything that optimistic.  But it perplexed me no end while it waited pinned to the wall.  And then one night I decided: it’s a tree.

(Apologies, by the way, for the really bad colors on that photo, and the ones that follow.  I have no idea what, or even if, I was thinking.)

I then took some of that orange and wove it through the rest of the tree til it joined up pretty organically.

And then I worked on the ground.

It looks like some odd tree on a little island (hey! a pattern) in the middle of a very cold river at night.  I reminds me of Lovecraft’s “The Colour Out of Space” (which incidentally was adapted into an excellent film by some Germans a couple of years ago).  I still think the tree trunk needs a bit of something–a counter-color, either lighter or darker–but until that makes itself known to me, it goes back on the wall, out of the line of fire.  Besides, Lovecraft described the “colours” as being both sickly and luminous, and this seems both…who knows?  Anyone out there need a cover image for a paperback reprint?

*Originally, there were to be three paintings whose progress would be displayed.  But the number of images for the third grew very large, so I decided to make it the subject of its own post.

Anyway, that’s how things stack up at present.  See you shortly, and thanks as always for stopping by.

3 thoughts on “Paintblog, Late Feb, some works-in-progress

  1. For the first painting, I was thinking about maybe some creature basking on the beach near the trees. For some reason, it reminded me of a photograph of the collection point for Tropheus moorii ‘red rainbow’, which is a small bay 2-6 feet deep that is thoroughly infested with Nile crocodiles….they don’t collect from there often because they need to drive the crocs out and keep guard while the collection is taking place.

    I loved how the interpolated trunks made the blob ‘come alive’ on the second one, but if you’re going ‘Color Out of Space’ on it, shouldn’t it then have been spattered by shiny, oozing, slimy patches?

    • Actually, in the first painting, I originally thought about having some creature barely outlined beneath the water–and that might still happen. As for the second work, well, nothing is written in stone (or coloured from space, for that matter). I was really impressed by what the Germans did with that story (and which happened in the middle of all this). Check their version out if you get the chance. And the “influence” was more coincidence than anything…it may not go down that path. That’s the “good” thing about painting. Or so I keep telling myself–

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