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  • Writer's pictureDavid Brett

Painting of the month: Poetry And Motion

Updated: Apr 20, 2021

What it is Here's where I select one of my artworks and talk about it in a little more depth, with the aim of explaining why I'm highlighting it, and provide greater detail about how it was created. This is the choice for March and early April, an exuberant piece on premium quality box canvas that appropriately seeks to capture the spirit of spring. It was created in acrylic paint and mediums using a range of mark-making techniques. The palette includes titanium white, mars black, ultramarine blue, phthalo green, process yellow and green gold. Oh and a tiny dab of cadmium red deep hue to lead the eye around the painting and provide a complementary contrast with the green. It originally started life as something quite different (although I no longer remember what that was) before I performed a handbrake turn and decided to explore a subject I first looked at in the painting Spring Into Action. My aim was to abstract the shape and motion of the tree. The thought was of wind animating the branches while sunlight on the leaves produces a kaleidoscopic effect; broken shards of colour that constantly shift position. I don't know why, but I really don't like my paintings to feel static!

Why I like it

Sometimes art is about picking the moment and I have been itching to do a painting with phthalo green as the main player for a while, simply because I enjoy the clean coolness of the colour. I'm not a fan of muddy greens at the best of times and this hue leans towards the blue spectrum, which I really feel brings an overall sense of serenity to the painting. A nice counterpoint to the movement in the composition. The subject, one from my series on the trees of Wimbledon Common, provided the perfect opportunity to go in this direction: the green conveys the freshness of early spring – before summer approaches and the prevailing hue turns cadmium yellow. From a technical perspective, I loved using my Catalyst wedge silicon painting tool on this work and you can see its application in the trunk of the tree, where it spreads the paint across the line of the bark to create a lost-and-found effect. I was also particularly pleased with the value balance in the composition.

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