78 Paintings A series several years in the making
Today, rather than sharing one new painting with you, I’d like to share 78 older ones.
A few years ago – about when the pandemic started – I began a series of paintings measuring 5×5 inches (12×12 cm).
Prior to that, I had done dozens of paintings in that dimension, but they were all single pieces – just part of the normal flow of paintings that might come out of any artist’s studio.
What set this new series apart was exactly that – I began thinking of it as a series. The individual paintings were of course meant to stand on their own, but at the same time were part of something bigger. Much like the relationship between an individual and their family.
And so I began painting… one after the other.
I never wanted to formalize this project by making it adhere to a schedule – say once a week – or making them all about a particular theme.
Sometimes a few months would pass between them, especially when I was working on larger pieces or commissions.
One especially productive week, I completed four of them.
But by and large, I’ve kept to a fairly steady rhythm of painting them, over time averaging about one every other week.
For me, it is the ideal format – It’s not too large, and not too small, and I can usually finish them with a few days of effort.
As I did more and more of these, I began to treasure this project – it quickly began to feel like the ideal way to learn and grow as a painter, giving me the opportunity to experiment with design, color, lighting – even the effects of working with a repetitive design, as with the teacups.
In fact, I’ve come to think of them as the heart and soul of what painting means to me.
I recently reworked parts of my website (it’s a never-ending job), and as a part of that effort, I put all 78 on one page (there are also a few from the last couple of weeks that are not there yet).
Looking at them all at once, I couldn’t be happier about how they seem to belong together, and can’t wait to add the next one.
I’d like to invite you to have a look at the whole series. Click the blue button below.
PS – thinking about constant website maintenance reminded me of a story I heard from one of my uncles. He was an iron worker who spent several years on the construction of the Mackinac Bridge connecting Michigan’s lower and upper peninsulas – one of the largest bridges in the world. The bridge was so long – 5 miles – that he said the painting crews would start at one end of the bridge and begin painting. By the time they finished – several years later – it was time to go back and start painting the bridge all over again. I can relate in so many ways…