Thursday, January 22, 2009

Moving toward Abstraction

Since this blog is a place to post and discuss my developing art habit, I thought I would share with you my experiences in moving from purely representational painting into a more "abstract" style. While my paintings have been described as "painterly", my subject matters have been based on realism. These paintings are also based on "realism, but with a movement toward simplification. This first painting, "November Gold" was developed from a sketch. There is a twisted fencerow behind my house which is a constant source of inspiration for painting. I am continually drawn to the twisted, gnarled trees. I took my sketch to my studio on one particularly chilly evening and this tiny (12x12) painting evolved. I was more interested in capturing the feeling of the golden sunlight passing through the golden leaves. I simplified and flattened a lot of spaces.

This second painting "Dandelion Invasion" was painted on a beautiful spring afternoon. The pear and cherry trees were blossoming. The birds were singing. The bees were humming. I felt energized. I planned to paint a "plein air" landscape but could not do it. I was drawn to the silly dandelions that dotted my lawn. I flattened the space and painted from an aerial perspective. I focused on color and texture.
Dandelions, are such happy little invasive flowers! They are loved by all children and despised by gardeners and lawn nazis. They remind me of happy times. I gave a different dandelion painting to my father for Christmas. He was the proclaimed lawnmeister of Sara Ann Court.
As I venture further into the land of abstraction, I am focusing on design, texture and space. I am painting non-objectively, but perhaps adding recognizable objects. ( I have started a class) I will post some of these when I produce a start that is postworthy! I would appreciate your comments, positive or negative.


Janelle Goodwin said...

Both of these paintings are intriguing. They make me want to step in and take a closer look. I love how you made abstract paintings by studying nature in your yard. Beautiful!

Poetikat said...

These are exactly the sorts of paintings I would want to hang in my house! I much prefer the representational to the hyper-real. Almost all the pieces in my home (mainly thrift-store originals) have just that sense of blurriness that lends them to interpretation rather than cold hard truth.

The little 12x12 is beautiful! Dappled sunlight through the trees - you have definitely captured it.
I'm not a lawn-nazi, by the way. I love dandelions and buttercups.


Peggy said...

Dandelions are glorious. I love the way you describe them as "happy invasive little flowers"! How very true that is. My favorite dandelion stages are when they scream yellow and when they go to seed. With 65 inches of snow on the ground here, it's going to be a while before I see them. Thanks for sharing!

Maria said...

I really, really like that blue...

neetzy said...


Thanks so much. I find much inspiration in my backyard!


Thank you for your kind words! The blurriness is partially due to my inadequate digital photography! The first painting is much clearer and brighter in person. The second doesn't look too bad. I'm glad you appreciate dandelions and buttercups the way I think they should be appreciated.


The thought of screaming yellow invasive flowers is enough to warm a cold heart in mid-winter!


Are you referring to the blue in the second painting? That was a painting done on top of a tired old painting. (I recycle!) I left some of the old painting in for color and texture. There are several layers of various shades of blue. I'm glad you like it!

Barbara Pask said...

Anita, I like both of these. I think they are unique and original. I think you are on to something.

dive said...

Hi, Neetzy.
These are gorgeous. It looks like you are distilling and refining your already wonderful style into something more intense and pure.
I love it!

Winifred said...

I love those dandelions, yours are much nicer in the picture than the ones we get on our lawn. Gorgeous colours. I love it when the lawn is covered with daisies, my husband doesn't!

neetzy said...

Hi Barbara,
It's a bit of a departure from the usual landscapes, but much more fun!

Dive, Wow! Thanks. I was getting a tiny bit "bored" with landscapes. At least for the moment. I'm still working on a few, but exploring a few other approaches. I'm trying to capture more of the essence of the moment.

I'm all about "natural" landscaping. I love the dandelions, the daisies, the queen anne's lace, etc. I just wish the uglier weeds wouldn't invade the flowerbeds! I am surrounded by woods and meadow and have difficulty maintaining anything! Thanks for stopping by!

jeannette StG. said...

Wow, the first one is good - it reminds me so much on Mondriaan's early period (before he went to totally abstract renderings). cheers, love your blog!