The land and the people in Newfoundland are genuine, the real thing, they exist closely with the land and are intertwined with it, live in close contact with it, cannot help but be shaped by it. The tidal pools that you come across contain little worlds of life ebbing and flowing, reliant upon the tides just like air into lungs. What may appear to the casual passerby is actually a complex ecological system of life and death, beauty, growth and decay that is continually changing right before your eyes. It is magical. The people too are dependent largely on what the land has to offer, from fish to berries, there are cycles to be seen everywhere you look.
From a technical standpoint this painting was relatively uncomplicated and came together quickly. The water jumps out as it is so vivid there...a deep blue that is even purple in some places (I saw some in Cape Freels). My greatest challenge here was to convey the impression of the hardness and undulation of the rocks...the veins and organic patterns and shapes that twist and braid down the length of each rock. Certainly the most enjoyable area to paint was the burnt orange hues at the bottom where the rock has water on it and the minerals can be seen in an all together different light, darkened and brought to life by the water.
Oftentimes after months have passed the beauty of a place starts to seep into your blood...like a trickle from a rock bed or the melting of a glacier....slow and steadily you find yourself romanced by a land that you dwelt briefly upon many months ago. The captivating part is that you are not even consciously aware of it. It simply is. I find myself being bewitched by Newfoundland all over again, each time I look through my reference photos to ponder the possibility of a painting here or there...each painting is a reliving of an experience, and in that moment all of the affection and wonder that you felt sitting on that cliff, speaking with that person, hiking down that trail, they all come back to you with an fragile intensity. Anything that moves us to that extent deserves our attention and we must embrace that memory so that we can share it with others, in the form of art, poetry, photography, music, or simply as enthusiastic anecdotes shared between kindred spirits.
Be well, take good care, and share some happiness today.
"Colour is my day-long obsession, joy and torment." ~Claude Monet
Here is some information on my upcoming solo exhibition!
Portraits Of Newfoundland
November 5-22nd, 2009
Abbozzo Gallery, Oakville, Ontario
Opening Reception November 6th, 7-10pm