Take me to the clouds above
This large blue abstract art work carries inspiration from those long lazy days when we used to stare up at the clouds in the sky.
Warm, breezy days when we could lie back in the grass and forget the world around us. I used to do this as a kid but probably less so as an adult I’m afraid.
Bear in mind though that this is just an abstract interpretation and therefore not meant to actually look like a sky full of clouds; but I do hope you get that feeling when you glance across it.
Using new colours
There’s always going to be blue and white in a painting about the skies and clouds but there was also the need to include a new and rather unusual shade too.
It’s the one that looks a little bit purple in places – that’s the new blue I’m referring to. It’s actually a metallic variation of a Scania truck blue that my paint suppliers kindly mixed for me. It’s got the most amazing diversity of tones within it. Part purple, part blue; a little bit smokey in places with top notes of silver and cream. It’s gorgeous.
So the new blue is good then?
Oh yes – and it’s one of the main reasons the painting works. It’s the glue that holds it all together and is vital in adding a bit of warmth. It’s really easy to combine these colours in a very cold way. There needs to be a little substance here and there and I think this new blue does just that.
The other warm tone is gold. I’ve avoided the obvious cliche of adding colours that remind me of sunrises and sunsets as this would have diluted the majesty of those sunny days I am referring to. I just wanted to reminisce about the uninterrupted joy of blue skies and clouds.
How the structures were formed
My biggest consideration was to leave a border around the paint applications.
In this painting I decided to keep the main forms contained. To be honest it was a decision based loosely on how particular clouds form – very often they float across the sky on their own, or in small groups, surrounded by blue sky (not something we see in England very often though!).
On to the white background went the main colours. I applied these over a number of sessions, each one following a sequence of carefully placed applications. One of the more interesting techniques at work here is that of thinning. It’s a critical part of any painting I do and one that requires concentration and a degree of courage!
In Cirrus 12 I’ve thinned many of the outer reaches of paint quite considerably and this has allowed certain paint flows to bleed outwards. It’s a really nice effect and one that makes me think of how clouds dissipate as quickly as they form. It’s especially pleasing to see this at work on a brand new canvas from a new supplier. It’s the best I’ve ever used and has been made for me specially in Germany.
Living with the painting
Easy. No problem.
No complicated colours or shapes to wrestle with; nothing to shout at you every time you walk past. It’s light and airy but is every inch a Swarez. It’s packed full of tiny details and beautiful forms. It’s never angry or aggressive but it will always remind you to take a moment or two and look up to the sky.
I think that’s something we could all do with remembering from time to time.
- Canvas: Polyester 340gsm
- Preparation: One coat of primer, one additional skim coat
- Paints: Enamel paint (7 colours) made to my own recipe
- Frame: 44mm Museum graded floating frame with 8 tensioning corner wedges.
- Hand-stretched and stapled on the reverse
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