Inspiration takes its cue from a million different things. Music is most definitely one of the major ones; I can think of few other tunes that have had an impact upon me than ‘Wish You Were Here‘ by Pink Floyd.
In particular it’s the line I mention above that resonates in my head so loudly and is one of the most recognizable quotes from their repertoire. So yes, it is loosely based on two goldfish swimming in a bowl. Of course I wouldn’t just leave it at that for the composition – bear in mind that the quote is the backbone for the painting but not the controller of it.
As an abstraction I need to be very careful not to make the shapes too figurative; I opt for just enough motion, definition and movement to promote the suggestion of fish without it actually being defined as such. Always a fine line to tread. I’ve loved yellow as a colour for my whole life, combining it with orange and black is a winner.
I remember saying to a friend of mine that I wanted to paint something based on a line from a song and he thought I was nuts. “No-one will get it” he said. He may have a point. Personally I think he was being a little Koi (see what I did there?).
I think of this painting as a very brave and bold one for a number of reasons. Taking the Pink Floyd reference aside for a moment it’s one of the very few I have done that is painted directly onto the primed surface of the canvas. Normally I put a couple of thin base coats on first. This gives a very unusual effect.
In addition I also evaporated the edges on a large proportion of the outer applications to expose the weave pattern underneath. It was a deliberate ploy to get the effect of bubbles. It seemed to fit with the nature of the painting as it evolved.
I have also removed all the gloss from the paint too, something I haven’t done before. I’m pretty sure there was a reason for this but for the life of me I cannot think what that might be! Anyway, it looks fabulous and that’s all that matters.