Original Painting - 36 x 36 oil on canvas
"Playing in Rorschach's Ink"
I have taken my time on this painting, longer then usual, as I was having fun figuring out what it was about in its many layers. It started out as a painting to myself and for myself, as a self portrait. I had a desire to discuss with myself parts of my deeper subconscious,all to me beautiful and elusiveness. My original vision was initially attracted to the white background and skin, with the two large dark areas on either side, being the shorts, and hair, pushing in at the sides. The under painting, or initial beginnings of the painting, was done in a dark green (1) ( first color that I grabbed instinctively),
(in progress - underpainting)
and as I began to block in the background and the patterns of lights and darks that I had envisioned originally, I realized that I become enamored with the dark hands of the underpainting (2).
I had to, at that point, sit back and try to figure out why the dark hands were pulling me, and why I couldn't bring myself to paint over them. What they kept saying to me was paint, stains, ink, guilt, joy, child-like exuberance, a complex mixture.
Its a very giddy empowering feeling to be doing a painting completely for yourself and no other. And by that I mean that I was aware in this one that many would misread my intent and despite all of that, I would and could not change the painting to better suite the larger consciousness, but that is the nature of creating something and letting it go in to the world. As an artist, you have no control over what others will see in your work. Its a complete lesson in Willow-like existence, just flow and let them blow by with their visions and acknowledge them, but still retain to your original vision if you can see it still, after the impute of others has passed by in a blur, then resume work. (3)
With that I remembered Rorschach's ink blot tests,
and also some wise words from other artist friends that say we bring ourselves to the painting. That means really that we are always self analyzing ourselves whether we realize it or not. No matter what the situation, we look thru our own eyes, and see life based on what our completely individual reality and existence has been up to this point. I noticed then that the painting started to take on several meanings, and it had expanded with out me realizing it to accommodate the viewer. It is the duel meaning to this painting that I most enjoy. That this is me talking to myself and answering ( for sane or not sane), and also this is you talking to yourself and also answering yourself. With that I felt the need to change the hands from the solid ink stained hands, with a very determined and hard and sometimes dire read, to more of a splattering, which would feel right to me if I was playing and tapping my fingers in a bowl of ink. It then became its own Ink Blot test with in its own ink blot test, much to my amusement.
The only other thing I would like to note and share, is that throughout the painting of this one, I would turn it continuously, and came to settle on the above position and also in a more horizontal one (below). I love how the hair becomes a more prominent component in this composition, but stays true to what I was wanting with the original intent. The more abstract components of the composition come out more strongly in this view also.