Thursday, September 30, 2010

"Message in a Bottle" Sessions 8-12

"Message in a Bottle"
oil on panel
8 x 10 inches

A tiny bottle wrapped in cream-colored tissue, a larger bottle carrying a message but with no cork to protect it, and finally a fragile shell, so thin a breeze could lift it... water, air, travel, mystery, and adventure are all woven into this simple design of three objects lined up on a shelf.

They seem to tell a story together, of secrets and memories, but we are not sure what it is. These objects seemed to arrange themselves on my shelf, and demand their story be told.

But what I did not realize when I set out to paint this, was what a challenge the glass bottle would turn out to be! What our mind tells us is a solid glass vessel with weight and symmetry, is actually only an arrangement of reflections superimposed on the background. One small mis-step of the brush or the eye, and the reflection wavers and the integrity of the bottle is lost.

Making this ephemeral illusion stand straight and symmetrical was a challenge, it only wanted to lean and warp! But I finally managed to nudge it into a position of solid grandeur, bravely holding its fragment of a note.