I love how art never fails to move me in many different directions. As I study different art styles and learn about art techniques and methods, my pathway often leads me away from visual arts to other forms of creative expression.
Today, I discovered the author, Christopher Paolini. His name and his works were unfamiliar to me. I think I’ll check him out at our local library. What led me to Paolini was a search for quotes about the sea — my current focus in oil painting.
Here’s is my most recent seascape. I’ve titled it The Sea in Motion because that was the effect I wanted to capture, insofar as I was able.
Here is the quote I found:
“The sea is emotion incarnate. It loves, hates, and weeps. It defies all attempts to capture it with words and rejects all shackles. No matter what you say about it, there is always that which you can’t.”
To Paolini’s words, I’d like to add that the sea also defies all attempts to capture it with paints, for while there have been many great seascape and marine artists — Frederick Waugh, Winslow Homer, and Claude-Joseph Vernet come quickly to mind — there is still an element of power, beauty, and mystery that simply can’t be put on canvas. The sea is greater than any and all attempts to define it.
In the seascapes I’ve painted in the past, my oceans have been fairly calm, so when I went to my easel today, my goals were to:
- Have fun and paint an ocean scene any way I want
- Avoid over-blending
- Create a sense of movement in the water
I feel that I succeeded on all counts. As I painted, I had time to reflect a bit on seascapes and the appeal they hold. As Paolini so rightly stated, it’s all about emotion. The sea truly moves us in many ways.
Art, too, should be about emotion and movement — and please, notice the similarity between the two words. Our emotions do move us. Like the sea, emotions are powerful, beautiful, and mysterious. And art possesses those same qualities.
As I continue painting — seascapes and landscapes, too — I want to more fully appreciate the concept of movement in oil painting, not only in the brushstrokes and other techniques, but in the expressiveness of my art.
Who knows where it will lead me next?