Saturday, August 14, 2010

"The Wave"

"The Wave"
9 x 12 inches, oil on panel

The objects I arrange in a still life often seem to imply relationships, and the "wave" shape of the overarching waxed paper in this piece suggests to me a peaceful embrace of the two companions below.

The handle of the silver creamer is sculpted like a stylized curl of wave as well, so its obvious partner was one of my favorite seashells. I also always look for a new challenge when I set up a still life, and in this one I was excited to try to capture the various whites in the composition: the creamy white of the shell, the sharper blue white of the waxed paper, and the slightly yellowed chipped white paint of the shelf below.

It is these differences, and the small instances of color in the reflections, which make a monochromatic painting feel "in color" instead of just flat grays. I mix all of my neutral tones from a full-spectrum palette, and I never use any black paint, which dulls the colors. So what at first glance may look like grey, always has a subtle tilt towards a color.

In this way, these two companions beneath their arch of paper, capture a small moment in time.