Updated: Mar 8, 2022
The Freeing process of making a mark
How much do I love this quote attributed to Kandinsky, who has been called the father of abstract art?
There is an air of Freedom in this quote. I've come to learn that in most freeing activities there are also boundaries. These boundaries allow us to dance creatively within them. Our hearts soar when we know there are boundaries that help us create our intended piece.
Whether you are an experienced artist or an investigating one, knowing some rules, if you will, can get you going and help you create a beautiful and successful abstract piece of art.
I used to look at these free flowing pieces and admire them for the movement and color and think how beautiful they are. I had, for the majority of my artistic pursuits, created more lifelike and realistic works. That served me well as I've learned that one must be able to do that and be able to render out a subject with accuracy in order to really understand the complexity of an abstract piece.
Sounds a bit weird, I know, but as Kandinsky said....It demands that you know how to draw...he even says "draw well"
So....#1, DRAW, if you don't draw, there are many tutorials that can teach space, proportion, variety of line....all the good things about sketching. Just invest in an inexpensive sketch pad and pencils, an eraser, blending stump and make some marks.
No one is looking over your shoulder in judgement, just draw
choose a simple photo of a bird, tree, beachball, whatever and begin. You may fall in love with it.
Draw circles and lines....squint your eyes at your subject and realize that everything we see are shapes that relate to each other and see yourself finding beauty in the simplicity of that.
#2, Heighten your sensitivity for COMPOSITION, as our quote points out.
Think of a square and the focal point needs to be upper Right, upper Left, Lower Right, lower Left.
Never in the middle...Why, because we perceive the beauty of things when they are off, when they are odd
It's how we are designed
In my Artist Brain, the circle area filled with metallic copper than has a shine to it is the focal point of this piece entitled "Traveler"
I tend to think of focal points as the star of the show and the rest of the mark making as part of the supporting cast. The focal point is the most interesting, intense, unique, bright spot in the painting. It's where ones eye rests and goes to first.
#3, COLOR...Pick up or print out a color wheel. How beautiful this simple guide is! You'll discover that what makes the color blue live it's best life is when it is blessed to be near it's compliment of orange opposite on the color wheel. Creating a quieter, softer transition, the same blue can be integrated with its neighbors on the color wheel, (soft greens/violets), and create harmony and a peace experience for you and your viewer.
I would say that spending time with color can bring out the poet in you.
This leads me to
#4...The POET in us.
One thing that allows an artist, creator to dance freely using the above so called rules or boundaries is our unique and wonderous view of the world and what we want to express.
To me, this is the most valuable part of a painting.
No other person can say what you have to say, not one other person is exactly like you. With each mark, with each stroke of the brush as color is laid down, you have imparted yourself into the piece.
I am confident that anyone can learn to paint...truly.
but what each individual brings to a work of art is the work of art they are and that is the uniqueness that is you.
All art materials are just that...inanimate supplies. They are nothing but potential until the poet, the artist, takes them in hand.
Thank you for reading and if you are intrigued by the thought of creating your own masterpiece no matter what level of creative you are, please feel free to contact me. I'd be honored to be your guide.