Over the last few months, I've opened up a new window regarding my approach to art...
... that of the image for it's own sake (all paintings except the top left), a dramatic departure from the "paint for the sake of paint" approach (top left painting). Some of these new works compare favourably with my older more visceral ones despite the lack of textural effects with impasto paint.
The use of calligraphic lines and the application of textures with a roller to partially destroy realism is a recent compulsion of mine that I can't seem to shake out! With calligraphic lines, there is the potential to go free style and even disregard the underlying image. Using more colors with these new methods is a challenge for me, as I don't want to lose the power of monochromatic renditions (I'm still in the process of figuring out the best approach with more colors). In terms of technical aspects, raw cotton seems more compatible with the new approach than raw cotton/linen (cotton provides a smoother surface for staining).
Despite the appeal of the new techniques, I'm not willing to discard the more painterly approach. After all, I managed to produce some noticeable visceral works with it last year. It looks like I'm gonna have 2 streams of works for a while.... until I can combine elements of both!
In a nutshell, a few things to mull over during my vacation...
Note to self: "Some key learnings: retaining high contrasts, considering warm greys to enhance adjacent colors, applying more freedom behind calligraphic lines, leveraging new techniques in specific areas only (less is more) and recognizing the strengths inherent to each of the two styles (flat and almost immaterial images with bold calligraphic lines that seem to anchor them at least temporarily; painterly and textured images seemingly taken by the void)."
Subnote to self: "Calligraphic lines that hold their own without the underlying vanishing image, like the last black ink marks of a Zen master!"