30 April 2023

boob jobs


Evening Prayers Brunswick Heads, 2 March 2019, oil on canvas board, 30 X 25 cm

 Evening Prayer Brunswick Heads,2 March 2019, oil on canvas board, 30 X 25 cm (restored 15 April 2023)

Here are four images that comprise two earlier pictures and the subsequent restoration of them
both. I say restoration, but I might just say that there were properly finished at a later date because I was never happy with them the first time around. But I write restoration because they were kicking around in the back of my small Toyota for months before I grabbed them one day to 'finish' at the beach after a session. But by then they were pretty scuffed up and in need of an overhaul, more than just a boob job to make them seem more desirable.

This is a shame because I had mostly liked the 'ideas' in each of them, especially the one below which is essentially just four wide bands of colour, three for the sky, and a dark one for the sea below.

I think at the time, which was miles and miles ago, I didn't worry about 'a finish' as much as I do now. This, I feel somehow is usually the reverse of the process in a series of work for a painter. Usually at a painter's start things begin a little tight but then go crazier with later on in life. But Hey!... 

I usually stopped working on a picture when I felt 'it had arrived' at a good place in my imagination. That is to say that it accomplished the purpose of a painting session by having created an image from my imagination while using my eyes, and which I found wholly pleasurable. Whether or not that represented reality for someone else was somewhat secondary. For me the question was; Had I caught something in what I had seen? 

So although I feel the top painting, the one with the purple line of cloud stretching beneath the warm yellow band of sky was certainly finished after the initial session, I had also been unhappy with the sea. Had it been too monotonous or otherwise deficient technically speaking? In any event, I put in the boot of the car where it got bounced about and roughed up for about a year, and by then it needed to see a surgeon.  

The result of this operation changed its form and colour entirely. But I was pleasantly surprised nonetheless, and reasonably happy with it. 

This one directly below, is a shame because I had loved the way the four bands of colour expanded across the picture plane like elastic; the palest Prussian blue, then a rich (but broken) pink, then violet underneath, giving the whole sky a certain kind of weight.

To finish it, I had imagined only a small bit definition work around the horizon line that had needed cleaning up. But alas,... that too, had suffered at the hands of the boot and it too went under the surgeon's brush. I wasn't overwhelmed by the result.

Though I did enjoy this work of cosmetic surgery, I also regretted too, because I think like so many surgeons must feel deep in their hearts and behind their credit cards, that really, the boobs had been perfectly fine the way they were before surgery.  

But there are lessons to be learned all around. One, like boobs, skies, no matter what the configuration, are almost always quite beautiful in their natural state. And two, like an ex. of mine had constantly harangued me, just keep the car clean.

Evening Prayer Brunswick Heads, 11 March 2019, oil on canvas board, 30 X 25 cm

  Evening Prayers Brunswick Heads, 11 March 2019, oil on canvas board, 30 X 25 cm (restored 15 April 2023)

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