Typically something I would work on at my North Dakota studio, Victim is a brief study in the media with some optimism for improvement in subsequent work. In this small series (3 as you see it) I juxtaposed a portrait of Little Warrior, a survivor of the battle at Little Bighorn, with a personal letter written by Michael Vetter, a soldier who did not. My intent is to portray the ambiguity between villain and victim given the historical (and arguably ongoing) dishonorable interaction with Native Americans by our government.
I often find myself working in layers, much like one would in Photoshop. I think it has become a part of the way we see things and understand them. On many handheld devices, for example, we slide between screens as if removing layers. In this case, however, text becomes pattern and pattern becomes layer, one overlapping the other.
An art is about subtleties, isn’t it? I mean, if you look at the difference between Da Vinci’s work and that of his master, Verrocchio, the difference is not in the subject matter or the endeavor but rather the life-like qualities in the work of art. It’s the nuances, or subtleties make the difference between a lifelike work of art and one that only mimics life.
I’ve started a new painting on this subject. I’ve recognized it in previous paintings I’ve done where this “subtlety” is reflected in the use of color or the near touch between objects but I’ve not really focused on it. So far I’ve restricted the color usage to that of a prior painting and will probably restrict it even further so that the painting is not so much about dramatic color or value but the very slight changes between them. I’m also considering proportions again (and again, and again…) but looking for another way to reflect that study.
So far only the color, proportion, and pattern is evident but, with some more time, additions will soon follow.
I’m working on a small series of mixed media collages from a short story. This is the first drawing for possible use. Charcoal approx. 6″X 8″.
Working on a couple of ideas tonight on iconogrphy. Watercolor and india ink.