Thursday, August 26

Keeping It Real--Torn Between Realism and Impressionism

Acrylic on Canvas
18 x 24 in/46 x 61 cm
Copyright 2010
I wanted to let you know that I am torn between painting styles. A few months, and a few blogs, ago I talked about my painting style. I said then that I really enjoyed the loose, open, and atmospheric Impressionistic style. I still believe that is how I’m destined to paint most of my subjects.

However, and there’s always a however whenever you make a definitive statement, isn’t there?

For whatever reason, I keep painting paintings that can be described as nothing other than realism. Just look at today’s image.

Now, I wouldn’t call it photo-realism even though from a distance one may think it looks like a photo. I say that because I don't think I'm obsessive-compulsive enough to paint down to the very last detailed brick or pane of glass (thank goodness).

But you could certainly say it's representational since there’s no doubt that clearly it’s a painting of a ship in a harbor with a backdrop of office buildings.

But it’s a long, long way from the loose, open, and atmospheric Impressionistic style.

OK, so what? Why am I torn?

Like the person who keeps repeating the same action but is always hoping for a different outcome, I think painting realism has become a habit, not necessarily a bad habit, but a habit all the same.

I am torn because I don’t particularly like realism…that much. Note, I didn’t say I don’t like it at all. Just so you know, when I look at a realistic, and especially a photo-realistic, painting my first thought is, “that looks just like a photograph,” rather than, “what a beautiful and glorious painting.”

In other words, the realism actually gets in the way of my viewing the painting.

It has taken me over a year to realize this, and I’m torn because I want to be certain I’m on the right artistic path. Unfortunately, nothing in life is for-certain.

Until next blog…

No comments:

Post a Comment