Friday, January 11, 2008

Non-Representational Art

Pele's Journey
9 x 12 soft pastels on Art Spectrum Colourfix
Miki Willa
As I mentioned a few days ago, I was challenged by the assignment to do something non-representational. The idea for trying different forms of art is to determine your degree of external and internal inspiration. I often express my internal world in writing, but take most of my inspiration for painting from God's world. This was a difficult exercise for me.
I actually had a photograph that got me started. It was of a tree covered hillside reflected in a very still lake. There was a bright band of bright yellow across the middle where the sun reflected off the pond scum when the photo was taken. I love the photo, but was setting it aside because the image was really cut in half by the bright yellow. As I was putting it down, I realized that there might be something I could use here for the abstract. Once decided, I elected to use my favorite complementary colors, figure a visual path through the painting, set up my darks and lights, and I jumped right in. I was not really taken by it at first. I was going to call it Journey, and be done with it. Then, one of my students came in and said she really liked it because it reminded her of the volcano. The more I looked at it, the more I felt she was right. In the end, I decided to call it Pele's Journey. I don't feel that this genre is my forte, and it is way outside my comfort level. I am, however, glad I did it. I have developed a great admiration for those who can do non-representational art well. As for me, I am going to stick to my landscapes for the near future with a small space thrown in every once in a while.

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