Working in a series is the best way that allows me to go deep into my practice whilst giving me freedom to try new ideas at the same time. It may appear that I am hopping aimlessly from one painting to the next but during the whole process I am gaining momentum and solidifying new ideas in a more fluid way.
This process of discovery is what excites me.
No matter what subject I’m exploring I feel the need for space. Recently I’ve been focusing on creating more quiet space in my paintings therefore allowing room for the eyes to rest. Interestingly, I am also finding that I am ridding myself of unnecessary things and creating simplicity in all aspects of my life. Art mirrors life right!! This insight made me realise that I would need to minimise some of the marks that I’m accustomed to making.
And so a new series was born.
There are many other reasons why I work in a series, some of which are below:
To explore colour.
I’m intrigued by the many colour combinations that arise from just using primary colours, black and white. My choice of colours change depending on the season – for instance, I am currently working on a spring palette and when I think of spring I think of bright green and yellow. I tend to shy away from pastel colours as they can feel a bit insipid however I am up for a challenge and may explore this as well! I was quite surprised when I mixed a stunning vibrant green using a touch of phthalo green with nickel azo gold. It reminded me of the bright green leaves I see on my walks at this time of year.
To explore a motif.
Many moons ago on a trip to India I was interested in the geometric patterns that adorned the mosques and temples I visited. I repeated the patterns to bring a rhythmic element and to create a story of deeper meaning. These are a few snippets of preparatory work that I’d incorporated as the background.
Artists also work in a series to Explore a subject – landscapes, portraiture, still-life, abstractions or to Explore a topic – political, environmental, religious.
Artists that work in a series:
- Gain a deeper understanding about the subject, technique etc which makes for better art
- Create a unified cohesive collection
- Ensures a more cost effective way of working
- Has an option readily available for similar work if a piece is sold
- Makes publicity easy as there is more choice of images to give to journalists etc
As artists it is our hope that the viewer is:
- Taken on an interesting visual journey when looking at a series
- Gain an understanding in the number of ways we explore a subject or technique
- Provided with new insights about the work and the artist’s personal expression
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