Ain’t No More Flowers | Alfie Gatt.
I have lately decided to take this challenge to a task. As I was painting figures, I started combining natural elements in some of the body parts. Up to that point, I never had the heart and courage to move away from the traditional holistic body being portrayed on canvas and remove partial parts from the portraits. It was in my latest collection, that I took the plunge and challenged myself to get out of my psychological and artistic comfort zone. I wanted to go beyond my abilities, and this challenge helped me grow. The pieces did not become isolated fragments haphazardly plotted around the body, but they became stories and lines waiting to be read and interpreted.
While composing these pieces I kept in consideration the white negative spaces, the floral silhouettes, and the portrait, by neither revealing nor hiding too much. In this collection, I yearned to impersonate nostalgic memories and feelings that cried out to be revived in these senses of the past. The inspiration of this all came through my observations of how dependent we have become on the mercy of technology; ready to trade in the beauty and supremacy of nature that surrounds us for these plastic visuals and gadgets. It was this thought that inspired me to incorporate nature into my art as a representation of the past.
A painting process of one of my latest collection ‘Love Letter’.
As these thoughts sunk me into its emotion of existence, I accepted the fact that I am the medium through which this message could be expressed. So I started the expression with several watercolour washes. I continued by applying ink to add more values and opaqueness and bring out a higher contrast on the leaves. With care and attention. I gently added wax pastels and pencil colours to bring out the detail. I would stop and come back and forth with these mediums until I felt that I had managed to bring out the best of the interpretation I desired, without any particular order of the mediums being applied, to create a spontaneous and free expression. Finally, I added some highlights and added final fine details. Tiring and daunting, though satisfying, this experiment was a very personal and satisfying one. I can confidentially say that I am very satisfied with the result.
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