Completion of my assignment work for Part 5 was problematic and did not represent some aspects of my painting abilities acquired during this course as it should have done. I absolutely agree with my tutor’s assessment that it was rushed.
To help remedy this I’m going to re-paint two of the paintings in the series going back to the stage where I develop the composition to fit the theme for each picture.
The two pictures are known as “Market” and “Home”, the first two in the series.
In all of these paintings, I’m trying to interpret the nursery rhyme-game “This little piggy went to market…” as a little pig having a dream about the various things mentioned. These two “Market” and “Home” are direct in their naming of a location but I wanted to place the pig in each to evoke them as a dreamscape.
Mistakes to Correct
In “Market” I had hoped to work in a restricted pallet to make the fruit and veg more unified and help the little pig to stand out. My intention has backfired because the scene has become dull and mono-toned… certainly lacking in tonal variation within the greens and yellows. This decision also made me choose a restricted range of produce to make use of the restricted pallet. I think I need to pay more attention to the overall effect before limiting my paints – I need to use the contrasts available to create depth, shape and guide the reading of the painting.
In “Home” my intention was to abstract a house into bricks and a fireplace – two objects that I was intending would stand in for a home and that could be arranged in a dream-like way. What I’ve lost is the emotional experience of a home – the pig asleep in front of the fire, comfort as if being an old sheepdog. I think bricks are wonderfully expressive because of the range of texture that can be used as is fire and there’s an opportunity here to create a glow of warmth, more along the lines of this picture I painted:
…which has the dreamlike qualities and warmth I’m thinking about, if not the ‘cosy’ home aspects.
Representing the pig
My tutor considered the painting of the pig itself to be unchallenging which is something I’ll now have to wrestle with. My intention was to find a minimal number of brushstrokes to create a pig with those strokes visible and used to create shape. The size of the pig is the size of the brush with each stroke calculated to create a limb, head or body.
This was one aspect of the painting that I was pleased with, the pink colour being not a colour used for anything else and a key to identifying the animal in question, which I felt was important.
I’m going to stick to this interpretation of my pig, while acknowledging that as my tutor indicates it could be a more interesting looking pig… I’m not trying to make it more than the minimal set of brushstrokes that it is.
Reviewing my work on the course I found this exercise in using a restricted pallet and complementary colours:
In looking at this now with my current problems-to-solve in mind it strikes me as a way to produce depth and shape – the complementary colours refuse to be in the same depth – they fight to be infront, perhaps. So my original choice of colours really didn’t help wit this cration of shape. Aslo I need to use shadow and highlight more – in this exercise those aspects create a lot of interest in the objects.
Somewhere else this shows up is in my still life for Assignment 2
Again I feel like the teapot ‘wants’ to be in the front too… the colours from opposing sides of the colour wheel contribute to the lively character.
So with the fruit, I need to find a range of colour that can re-create this effect.
I’m also keen to try to recapture the style of this teapot – a form of brushwork and colour application that I aspired to but have lost since this assignment.