The Swimmers Series
Encaustic on 4 12x24 Birch Panels
What's been interesting is how these swimmers have morphed. The boy on the left was the first one. He is fresh, kinda rustic and not overworked... at all. They've been worked simultaneously and all started out looking kinda like him. The next girl until about an hour ago, had a similar look to her friend on the left. Then she morphed and skewed away from that style crossed over to be more like the others. The next girl, she has had 5 different faces and two different bodies. I had a body that I liked, but after the first face went awry, I couldn't get a replacement face to work. I learned that face and body are a unit. Either they work as a whole together or I need to start over in total not in parts. What's interesting is that she has looked like the same girl in the face every time. I guess she wanted to show up regardless of what body she was on.
The boy on the far right had gotten a bit overworked in the face, but his hands are still at a good stage... so, what to do - based on the learning's of the girl to his left, do I keep working the face and risk overworking it or do I start all over again? Needless to say... he is sitting for the moment, while I decide what to do. I'm actually a salvager, so I'm sure I'll take at least one more run at him to keep those hands. My favorite is the boy on the far left and I've been reluctant to work on him at all and just leaving him as he originally showed up. He is actually based on the style of a German artist.
This has been such an interesting lesson in style and how it seems I want or need to paint. The more I try to duplicate the style of the one on the left - the more they end up away from that and settling into, I guess where they should be. They are teaching me that my style and voice show through. And no matter if I try to paint in someone else's style, my own style is going to find a way to override. I used to find this kind of frustrating. I haven't been a fan of this style I have. But, the more I paint, the more the style is refining and becoming something I do like. I have to thank Flora Bowley for helping to free up my thinking. Finally, I'm at the point where I am embracing my style rather than fighting it. It's taken a while, I don't know if any of you have found this to be true on your artful journey.
This foursome isn't meant to be too realistic, because for me that adds too much pressure and a load of expectations. So here they are... in the middle. They still need some work to be finished up. I need to figure out the bodies. So more work, more discovery, more learning. Happy Friday!