My daughter pulled a sheet of bubble wrap out of a box and put it on like a cape, and said “Wouldn’t this make a nice painting?” I thought first of Henry Ossawa Tanner’s “Two disciples visiting the empty tomb”, probably because of the light effect that I pictured and the gesture of the old man’s hand and head. Then I thought of another Tanner, “Annunciation”, one of my very favorite paintings. I think the first is in Chicago and the second in Philly. I loved the idea of representing a spiritual apparition as pure light and wanted to do something similar.
My first impulse was that I would need to use photography to pull off the girl’s pose, but had lost my camera. I was somehow able to paint her figure directly from life, and was glad that the camera didn’t turn up until after the painting finished. The title was actually my mom’s idea, and I thought it was brilliant.
Your comments regarding the way you could not use photography and were pleased you didn’t made me very pleased. I’m not dismissing all of you who do use photographs (as tools) and whose work I admire and am pleased to see. But something much more meaningful, even tougher comes along when the realisation is created from life or from memory/imagination, even if the resulting work is not as ‘correct’.
I think you have a little point, but then you could just lie and say you did it from life! I do think I notice differences but you have to wonder how much a of a psychological aspect there is to this.
Another really fine painting, Stephen. I love the mysteries you create – they are all over this canvas – I especially love the telephone poles whose wires simply end as though there is no ‘there’ there. The light from the box is as holy as anything I have seen in the old master paintings. And bubble wrap – even outdoes the space suit look….Bravo!