This photo shows a bit of my studio wall with some mixed media on paper work tacked up. I took it simply to document the larger painting, and loaded it into my editing program intending to crop the background and save that image. But the visual impact of this unedited version struck me. The drips and push pins on the wall have their own parts to play in the composition, as does the smaller strip of paper--something I'd cropped from a larger painting and was playing around with as a collage element. This bit of well-used wall has an unexpected beauty and rightness about it, so easy to overlook when focused on some task or idea.
During last weekend's studio workshop, we talked several times about the beauty to be found in old walls, sidewalks, and time-worn objects, and how once you begin to focus on them, to "see" them, a world of textural and color possibilities opens up. We all seemed drawn to the intricate textures and patinas that evolve over time on these kinds of surfaces that collect bits of nature and the scuffs and dents of human use.
I like the fact that the processes that I use in my work, both in cold wax and oil, and in mixed media (as shown here) are in some ways congruent with these natural process of accumulation and weathering. Layers are built up and then eroded or scratched into, and a variety of marks and stains made in passing contribute to the richness of the surface. Of course, I also edit and give careful thought to composition and other elements of art when I work--thus steering the work in certain directions, while much of the basic texture retains its random feel. In the photo, I like the juxtaposition of the paintings with the wall that has similarly evolved.