Blue gargoyle, oil on polypropylene panel, 44 x 60 cm
Finally gotten round to playing with my reflections in my ‘Claude mirror’ (here). I wanted to see if they had any capacity to reveal something truthful about the mirror-gazer (me, in this instance) that an ordinary mirror could not. I also wanted to explore what kind of mark-making might be most suited to images of this type. I wanted to continue with polypropylene sheet rather than canvas, but didn’t want to just fall back on Kanevsky palette-knife and paint-mixing techniques. I want to develop my own voice, discover my own lexicon of mark-making.
And so after a little trial and error i found a kind of drybrush method that used paint directly from the tube. Being a latter-day Fauvist, i like working directly from the tube, keeping the colour as pure and intense as i can. I am not troubled by monochrome painting in the least. On the contrary, it imposes a kind of rigor and discipline that i like to struggle against.
So this is today’s effort – self-portrait of a blue gargoyle. I intend to produce two more, a gargoyle trilogy, in order to become quite familiar with this technique. My intention is to then choose one of the three gargoyle paintings and produce a fourth, larger portrait from it but using palette knives instead of dry brush.
Gargoyle No 2 - a bit more gentle humour in this one. If the No 1 betrays my melancholic disposition, then this more candied image hints at my loopy side.
Purple gargoyle, oil on polypropylene panel, 44 x 60 cm
And, No3. In this third and final gargoyle i have paid closer attention to the direction or 'grain' of the brush marks in an attempt not only to suggest a more naturalistic contouring of the facial features, but at the same time create a greater sense of abstract 'swirl' or movement in the work.
Green gargoyle, oil on polypropylene sheet, 44 x 60 cm
plus, some detail and fun with a camera which suggests you don't need a Claude Mirror, just a camera with a wide-angle macro lens capability to 're-configure' your own art into more surreal forms.