Friday, 7 August 2009

12fp(s) - painting 1

Before I begin:
Should I reveal the name of the film that features in the paintings, or should I let people guess??? For just now I'm going to let people guess the film source, and if someone gets it right or has a good guess I'll let them suggest a film for me to paint later in the series...

Below is my first film-influenced painting of the series:

Before starting this painting I aimed to make it quite minimalist with regards to the amount of colours and texture. This aim has been achieved to a considerable extent, but I have reservations about the car in the foreground, which I think is perhaps a little too strong within both aspects... Overall the image works fine, it is just that the actress (whom I originally wanted to jump out as the centre of attention) seems to get 'disguised' by the colours/textures of the foreground car and the lightness on the mans jacket.
I had my original aim for keeping the painting quite minimalist long before I started the painting because the source image/film is really stylish in black and white, so I didn't want to ruin its innate style by swamping my painting with colour. To help me keep things simple I took influence from Tim Sale (the graphics illustrator for hit TV show Heroes), and another illustrator, Rene Gruau, whom I recently discovered via the messageboard on Sale's website.

The Gruau image below is the piece that most influenced my film painting. (There was a second image which was equally appealing, but I'm going to save that one for another blog post soon)!
The similarities between Gruau's work and my painting at the top of this blog post may be very subtle (almost non-existent), but that doesn't really matter - is it not quite boring when an influence is straight-up copied by another artist anyway?

I posted this painting on my Facebook profile on Monday, and among the feedback it has received so far, Alison Cross described it as "a bit of Edward Hopper mixed with Luc Tuymans".
I'm really happy about the Hopper remark because he is one of my favourite painters, and has been inspiring some of my work to differing extents since 1999! I don't think our painting styles are particularly similar here, but I can certainly see a strong connection with regards to the impression of a narrative and the filmic composition.
Prior to Alison's comment I had not heard of Tuymans, but I have since checked his work out, and I can clearly see the similarities in our painting styles. Some of his work is available to view on The Saatchi Gallery website here, and a much larger selection of Tuymans work is available on his page at here.

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