Thursday, September 5, 2013

Art Tip #131

Conveying Emotion

I've been giving a lot of thought on the direction of my art.  I constantly fight with wanting to be technically good but wanting more than just a nice piece of artwork.  I think most artists reach this point at some time in their career.  I found some notes that I jotted down from an interview I read several years ago of an artist (didn't think to write her name down) who was at the same stage. She said it became a spiritual experience & it felt like she was an orchestra conductor of movement & energy.  Here are some of the questions that she posed.  

1. What emotion do you want your painting to convey visually? Somber, joy, anger,
passion, etc?  Do you want to describe a time of day or night?

2.  What colors to use?  Does a predominantly blue painting convey sadness or restfulness?

3.  What tonal value?  Does a high key painting speak softness or joy?

4.  What type of movement?  Do you want to speak of a bustling street scene or a person 
deep in thought?

5.  What type of marks should I make?  Should you have energetic brushwork for a waterfall 
or quiet strokes for a calm day on the water?

A favorite artist of mine is Ron Hicks. Each of his paintings have a definitive story.  In "The Conductor" his energetic brushwork allows the audience to experience the maestro's movement. You can almost hear the orchestra.

Before starting a painting, do you ask yourself what emotion you want to convey? Something to think about.