There are so many ways to read into perspective. I have been thinking about literal perspective as I am getting ready for this Friday’s Art Walk at the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art (that’s June 3rd… put it on your calendar!). For this Art Walk I am doing some smaller “studies” for the theme of my show at the Earl Smith Strand in September. I don’t think I have done a “study” for a painting since college. For me personally, studies are supposed to be looser and lighthearted. I am painting from many pictures that I have snapped the past few years from Road Trips and visits to Old Car City. These are photos and places that I have yearned to paint and have not found the time to do so. I am “re-visiting” in so many ways. The idea to re-visit for me has as many meanings as perspective. I’m bringing it back to my main point (my brain has been going in circles the past few weeks).
I don’t find perfect and new things as interesting as old rotting things. I love how old things have a story to tell. I am painting a few old buildings/houses from Maine, Route 66, etc (among several other subjects). I know perspective but I refuse to use a ruler; I like to eyeball it (yes, I know as an art teacher that contradicts how I teach the kiddos :)). I don’t like the “manufactured” feel that I personally get when I use a ruler. But some of these old buildings are quirky. They have lines, windows, additions and imperfections that truly throw traditional perspective off and would undoubtedly challenge those ruler lines that are the “rule.” Several times I have had to take a step back to make sure that I was really painting what was there. I am in love with an old house that I snapped a picture of that had been turned into an “Antiques” shack as advertised on the side of the building (I am determining whether that house was in Maine, Massachusetts or Nebraska? I’ll get back to y’all on that). I do like symmetry (eye-balled symmetry of course) and there was not much symmetrical about this house. I decided to leave the side windows awkwardly unsymmetrical. It adds to the character. And goes against mine. Perfect.
As my time is crunched between post-planning and Art Walk in two days (yikes!!) I am finding that I am getting caught in some details that should not necessarily be present in “studies.” And in a few paintings I was not having much fun (I wonder if you’ll be able to tell which two paintings those are in particular?). I am reminded of a quote from a little artist that I found in New Mexico on my travels: “If you are not having fun, kick yourself in the butt!” Consider my butt kicked. I’m off to have fun in my studio again. I’m not even going to proofread what I just wrote because I’m all about fun right now. How’s that for perspective?