Thursday, July 30, 2015

Stormfall, Cutler, Maine. Vincent Van Gogh; Night Dreams

Stormfall, Cutler, Maine
  oil on panel  14" x 18"

"I am seeking, I am striving, I am in it with all my heart."
Vincent van Gogh

Night Dreams
The winter dead trees
make a clattery night,
as the wind swoops and scrubs
at the brambled brush.

Shuttling clouds back lit
by the indifferent moon
run and skid in turn,
while red green stumps moan,
caught in memoried
dreams of past life.
Dean Taylor Drewyer

As one paints and scrubs in the shadow structure and establishes mid tones from which higher key lights and deeper darks can be established - as one figures and blocks in composition, space, paths of movement, areas of emphasis and de-emphasis - it is vital to keep all this thinking suspended in a kind of sub level. This, in order to be free to abandon oneself to shape and color, without naming objects or assuming outcomes. The closest experience to this 'making of a painting' is roughly equivalent to jumping off a high dive without looking to see if there is water in the pool; all the while juggling large, sharp. carving knives. What a wondrous process! Enjoy!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Hazy Morning, Outer Banks; John Berger, Eugene Delacroix

Wave Breaks, Outer Banks
  oil on panel  8" x 10"

"The challenge is to try not to just explain the mystery, but to ensure the mystery 
is shared and doesn't remain isolated."
John Berger

"Nourish yourself with grand and austere ideas of beauty that feed the soul."
Eugene Delacroix

When one is casting about for a subject, which really can translate to a search for a reason to make a painting - the difficult thing is to remain dedicated to the mystery of a visual incident rather than the easily identifiable part. This requires an embrace of the difficult and an acceptance that there will be 'scrapers' along the way but is a path always more rewarding because of what is gained by the process. This approach will yield series of works drawn from similar subjects as one struggles to solve the questions of what is going on here that brings me this sense of 'austere beauty' and allows this mystery to be shared. Again and again one returns to the sets of visual happenings to try and explain what might possibly end up as inexplicable. Perhaps it is that risk of failure played against the joy in discovering form and meaning that compels the painter.  That act of sharing found beauty that feeds the soul and allows connection to the mystery of being. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Sky Study, Painter's Psalms

Sky Study
 oil on panel  9" x 12"

Once one is bitten by the bug of wrestling with the visual, chaotic world and fighting to bring form or understanding out of it - it simply grabs hold like a dog with a chew toy and will not let go. What a joyful predicament!

Let me grasp the air
pulsing down these hills,
kissed by a moment's cold frolic,
without thought of the strangling calendar.

Let my feet step free into the swirl
in the yellow tall grasses,
my head up among the intemperate clouds, 
at one with my precious delirium.

There are no dances so
sweet as these hours of mine,
poured out on the land,
standing at the edge of mystery,
boldly greeting my imperfections,
held out as an offering.

I am never far from these fields,
lodged as they are in my deep.
Their wind songs find me
encased in dreams, lost,
slant light running loose
through my night shadows.

from 'A Painter's Psalms'
by Dean Taylor Drewyer