Intuitive process in painting
12th Feb 2011Posted in: Blog 0
Intuitive process in painting
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My most recent style of painting is one in which i splash paint about the canvas with my brush. I smear it and disperse a selected palette or two or three colors and their composites across the surface in a haphazard kind of way. I do this for hours. I have always stepped back from the work to gain some global perspective of what is going on but that has changed recently.  I step back now, only occasionally, to get the big picture but only for a period of ten seconds, sporadically. Most of the time, my painting method is up close and personal, with my face rarely more than 2 feet from the canvas. When i step back, i have the oportunity to project onto the painting the images i see in my mind. This process of projection uses those parts of the brain which are most likely related to the perception of faces and the conjuring of imaginary images. More the former than the latter. But i avoid stepping back lately because i have discovered that getting the global perspective of the image is less intuitive a process than the up close and personal posture which i have described. While i have the canvas in front of my visual field, i am focused on a central or working point while the rest of the canvas occupies the the entirety of my visual field in a peripheral manner. We know that what is in the periphery is not directly observable to consciousness while it is attending to the central or working point required in the task of painting. As a result, we can say that the peripheral perception remains mostly subconscious. The conclusion i have drawn from this is that the up close and personal stance before my painting is more intuitive because the forms and recognizable shapes emerge unconsciously rather than being projected consciously onto the canvas. So rather than step back and give my left brain, rational mind a chance to say what it sees in the picture, i remain in the right brain sensations while also relying on the motor cortex functions and somatosensory feedback connected with moving the paint around.  The result is that when i do finally step away from the canvas to look at it, i can be certain that the recognizable forms if any, which emerged in the painting are strictly the result of unconscious forces, intuition and perhaps even chance.

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