Tuesday, November 17, 2015

What does it mean when something isn't there, that should be there?



Lately the news from Paris is terrible enough that going into the studio and painting seems futile and childish. The world is so strange. It seems that the basic desire of people would be the same, to be happy, and to see others happy, rather than making everyone miserable. Can a person's heart disappear? Is there an empty place where their heart ought to be? It's too awful for words. All the time I painted these plates I kept thinking, "Something should be there. A plate shouldn't be empty." That's exactly how I feel about what is happening now. 

For some reason I have not painted fruit before

This is an example of a still life that was painted from a drawing, versus a pile of apples in front of me.

First I drew some apples, and painted a few of them.  Experimentally I drew the empty bowl with a spoon or two...then put apples in the silver bowl. The background was black and table was red with a bit of cloth...the notes on the drawing refer to that. Things change. Edward Hopper said something that struck a chord with me: "There's more of me in it when I improvise," or words to that effect. When  I read that I thought how true. That can't be true of everyone though. With some artists things are planned down to each detail ahead of time. 


The apples were then cut up and baked into a dessert. Next time I'm at the store I'm going to pay attention to the apples that are not red, because I want to use them next time I do apples. There must be a billion types of apple now. Some are so much better tasting than others.