From time to time I make the effort and paint a landscape which is ‘real’. This involves not adding or subtracting from a scene in order to make it fit an idealised version of the world. I find if I don’t make the effort to just ‘copy’ the scene and resist ‘converting’, the paintings begin to drift into the ‘dreamworld’. In this world objects and places are stylised and tend towards abstraction. The ‘real’ interpretation of the world is the common language, between the artist and the public, and this language needs to be updated from time to time.
This painting is an exercise in observation and restraint. Staying awake and not drifting into the ‘dreamworld’. I find it difficult, it is like trying to stay awake when all you want to do is fall asleep and dream. The painting is like ‘sketching from nature’ which was always considered good for the painter – I would agree with this advice, it keeps the painter grounded. I would like to be able to stay between the real world and the world of the imagination. The above painting is very tame (and real) compared to a paintings like ‘Wood Cutters‘ or ‘Bluebell Wood‘ where the scene is recognisable, but not in a ‘photographic’ way. Thanks to Morphodidius for the comment on the previous painting, putting into words what the paintings have been saying. Maybe ‘dreamscapes’ are not as bad as I thought.
The colours for this painting were: Burnt Sienna & Raw Umber (red), Cadmium Yellow (yellow) and French Ultramarine (blue). I was intending to include a few Daffodils in the painting, that’s why the Cadmium Yellow is there, but these were ‘flowers from the imagination’ and in line with the above sentiments – no daffodils. Cadmium Yellow is a very strong colour and not a natural landscape colour. It produces miserable greens with Ultramarine Blue. I included a little of this yellow all over the painting, even the sky, so its strong sulphur yellow in not dominating any particular area, when used as in the foreground on left.
I’ll have the video of the painting process in the next day or so. See you then.