Composition for Strings and Rain

nc web TM8297 Composition for Strings and Rain 24x24 oil on panel

TM8297 Compostion for Strings and Rain 24×24 oil on panel

Composition for Strings and Rain, a new addition to the Water Music Series, was begun by rolling a layer of blue-black paint onto a panel. Using a scrunched plastic bag, paint thinner, and paper towels,  the central, sweeping gestures of wave and water were executed.  This initial gesture was refined by accentuating the highlights and layering green and blue glazes. The incidental lines left by the edges of the roller were developed by tracing them with green, yellow-green, and blue paint applied with a fine brush. Additional lines were drawn in with a soft graphite pencil, sealed with a touch of alkyd medium. Short arrows of blue and blue-violet followed the direction of the “waves.” The central triangle was defined with a gray-blue tone, and a suggestion of water was painted in then blotted out, leaving just the barest hint of action. Additional glazes were used to adjust tones in the painting, and the last step was to paint small dots, suggestive of both moisture gathering on a web and notes finding, and climbing,  their assigned strings.

When I started the painting, my only “idea” was to start with a gesture of water and see where it would lead, taking advantage of any chance effects that happened during the initial process. In other words, trust the gestures! The feel of rain falling, hinted at by the roller tracks, was the result of recognizing and exaggerating what was already there.

Below is an enlarged detail from the lower center of the painting. Enjoy!

nc web TM8297 Composition for Strings and Rain (detail)

TM8297 Composition for Strings and Rain (detail)

4 thoughts on “Composition for Strings and Rain

    • Thanks. Yes, something new but also a cycling around again, too. These new pieces are harking back to my print and monoprint days, but with the addition of all I’ve learned since. I’m trying to let the initial idea and the way it “arrives” on the panel dictate what I will do next. The “dots” are appearing more and more. THey started as stand-ins for notes and stars, then as a way to make a long line with a bad wrist. Now, I just like their slightly formal and mechanical look in contrast to other things going on in the paintings.

  1. If your dots and dashes are meant as signals, they are coming through loud and clear! Gorgeous painting.

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