The Artist’s Mindset (or “Mind” Set)

It’s Monday (3pm Adelaide time)
and “Mindset”? … I’m not sure I’ve got one.

Even so, I’ve decided that I have to force some evolution in my artworks … I’m a bit bored with my oil abstractish landscapes (extended post-exhibition blues), so I’m trying to move slightly away from them.

On the weekend, I finished a sort of “Modernist” ish painted sketch on ‘canvas paper’ of people in a gallery with a redhead in the focus area –

The Redhead In The gallery

(I’ve always had this “thing” for redheads with glasses – 45 or so years ago I even married one … she’s a “keeper”). ….. But I digress.

I purchased an A4 pad of Yupo paper on Friday. I’d read about it but never seen the stuff.

After breakfast and before coffee, I sketched some stones on half a sheet (ie A5) using ink and pencil – lovely smooth free surface.

This afternoon I have spent a short (very short) time splodging on it with diluted oils (Prussian Blue, Australian Red-Gold, Raw Umber with AS Medium No 1).

This has been a really quick exercise – a very, very different painting surface that has sparked at least a large fragment of my imagination.
I’m not sure how resilient the painted surface will be once fully dry, but the potential seems great.

Rocky Exercise – ink, pencil and oil on Yupo

This is not a great artwork by any stretch of over active imagination, nor is it meant to be – simply a mini review and potential gathering exercise.

See – I told you I don’t really have a Mindset as such.

The Awful Artful Case Of The Missing Mojo

I’m bored with my landscape impressions, expressions, and abstractions.
My oil paints and canvasses don’t have that tempting siren call they should have.
No need to bind me to a mast with my ears plugged with wax to stop me answering the call to spend my precious time doodling and splurging in my studio.
My brushes and knives sit idle. My turps evaporates alone.

It’s a post-mid-life-crisis… surely that’s what it is – introspective ennui.

The last exhibition was praised by a good number of people, both in words and by a few sales.

Yes, but for me, seeing my paintings hanging together was something of a let-down
– it’s not that they were poor paintings – people assure me that they are good, some “very good”.
It’s just that they made me feel a bit 😑
(flat, bored, disappointed, unsatisfied.)

An experienced artist friend tells me that this is normal. It’s the usual feeling experienced by artists after an exhibition, and it’s good news.

This certainly has been my experience after the few exhibitions in which I have participated.
But “good news”?
Maybe, maybe not.
Perhaps this let-down is the thing that keeps the creative juices flowing.
I hope so.

Really, I want to get on with painting new works, but I just can’t get my mojo working.
The blues are all very well, but I should use the yellows and reds too.

I’m thinking I should explore semi-figurative abstractions more like this one from 2016.

The Mamre Incident’ c 31X24cm (painted surface) – oil on Arches Oil Paper – Ant Fox 2016

… or even like this (but better, of course 🙂 )

Trees and Rocks … from my sketch pad – sometime in the 1970s

Or am I whining about nothing?
Just wasting my time?

A Work In Crisis

I’m feeling the cold this winter.

My studio is very cold, so I haven’t been doing much painting.

But, I am slowly painting second layers over a largish canvas, constructing an abstract landscapey work … as a WIP, it isn’t fit for viewing yet.

For fun, I took some close-ups of portions of the canvas and made them into a digital photo collage … the subject is “from the easel”, but the result is “from the computer”.

“Fragments Of A Work In Crisis”

(digital photo collage of details of an oil painting work possibly in progress)