3648 Magazine Street
©2010 New Orleans art
Lamaze birth in Roaring Spring Pennsylvania to Elizabeth Sutton
Words about pictures
There is an inherent understanding in us regarding two dimensional art. Unlike most animals, we have the ability to perceive three dimensions on the flat stagnant surface. The illusion from the lines of the ambiguous transparent cube switching its face from front to back by the power of mind, fascinate all children who come to understand the phenomenon. For the young pure artist there is an irresistible desire to create these illusions if materials materialize. A growing child will begin to make judgments about there marks. This is when pure art moves into academia. During our development there is an expanding mental image of the world from ones senses. We can not help but experience the human form. I believe this is why the human form, the face in particular, is one of the most popular subjects. People will even find figures where there are none. When one discovers a figure in an abstract expressionistic piece, I’m amazed. That’s the magic of art and the art of perception.
The academic artist; understands how to create perspective, uses forms, patterns and lines to create “motion”, utilizes the power of contrast and ratio, balances color, is conscious of texture and moves the mark making devise gloriously over the substrate.
What makes a correct composition? It is a completely subjective story. Visual artists must have an understanding of “seeing” and the energetic world from which we communicate….. if art so desire we brake all of them. A good composition can even draw your eyes away with its content but, if your eyes move back, even in an insignificant amount, it is a successful composition for you. Like it or not.
Painting is madness. The logical and emotional sides of the brain go to
war, each competing for dominance. Logic says, “black and yellow make a
green, green and red make a neutral, red and yellow make an orange, warm
orange and black make a dark neutral.” Emotion says, “feel like this? Cyan
and Kool Violet make me!”
As a plein air painter
I pay my respect to two sides of a divine coin, emitted light and reflected light. The emitted light is the source that enables me to see my subject and my evolving canvas. This can be man made light such as the monochromatic yellow sodium street lights or the sun at noon pumping out its full spectrum juice. When light hits a subject it creates reflected light that consists of three forms, all light reflected back (white), no light reflected back (black) or light gets chopped up (color). Things get interesting when its a combination of all three, which enables an infinite range of experiences within the limits of one thing. I search for visual experiences that I subjectively deem as beautiful. My goal is to reproduce the feeling I get from reality and relate it to the viewer. I eliminate anything that causes my eye irritation. This is not to say that I only paint “pretty” things. Sometimes telephone wires and trash cans are the best part of a composition. The result is a work of art that is more enjoyable than the reality from which it grew. I paint entirely with the pallet knife emphasizing texture which reinforces the fact that the painting is an entity in itself, not what it represents. After all is said and done the works are merely supersaturated pigment solutions smeared over a sexy substrate.
Plein-air is not Impressionism
Contrary to common belief, plein air painting is not synonymous with impressionism, although it can be impressionistic. A plein air painting is done by an artist, on location, from start to finish. The plein air painter is the kung fu master in the art world, for the artist must have absolute confidence in every stroke, battling wind, insects, cars and the ever changing shadows cast by a constantly elusive sun. The plein air painter is a jazz musician of color, constantly improvising, in tune with his surroundings and demands a mastery of his instruments to capture the essence of time and space.
Plein air and color
The sun rarely shines on us with pure white light. Sunlight has obstacles to pass through before it can reach our eyes, mainly, 14 pounds of air! Outside of the tropics, in summer, at noon the sun has to travel through the least amount of gas and particles that distort the suns pure light. Outside of this limited time, the reflected sun light bouncing from a vista and the paint on the canvas shifts hue. This creates an interesting challenge to the painter who has to except that what he sees is not necessarily what is.