Precious Ambiguity

The Set Up


The Drawing . . .andWork In Progress

The Painting . . .
“Precious Ambiguity”
watercolor, 15 x 22 inches

As a person with an analytical mind and a nature for curiosity and understanding through logical process and detail, I have had to build the right side of my brain. That process hasn’t been easy. My nature is to crisply copy what is in front of me. And doing otherwise has been more than difficult.

Merging shapes, distorting ideas and color for the sake of making something a bit ambiguous is a process which must be learned. That goes for losing edges, creating color harmonies, assigning values . . . .all stuff which is outside of “reality.” For the person of logical mind, these things can be daunting to learn. But, if making art is the goal . . .and fine art at that . . . . .then they MUST be learned.

Someone once said, “Irritatingly precise – Charmingly incorrect.” I think that says a lot about making art that is magically attractive. Those four words hold much wisdom, I think.

The above process shows how a piece is developed to deliberately create ambiguity and hold a viewer’s attention. It is a terrific way to create ‘shapes’ that would otherwise not be possible via sudden epiphany. In this process (also see last post) the overlapping of multiple line drawings makes for serendipity discovery. And, believe me, it is confusing, but truly fun!

15 thoughts on “Precious Ambiguity”

  1. You are having too much damn fun! Beautiful! I’m having fun too with my first FULL BLOWN plein air watercolors! Just posted them. After a few more, I’ll start pushing my style and have some fun like you are doing here. Has Myrna seen these yet?

  2. Your groupie here! Yes, I like to follow what you’re doing, and when you get to doing Cubist sort of things, I’m really interested. Oddly, my word association when I saw your drawing was “Stonehenge”. I like how the color and value work together to indicate planes and create rhythm. Intriguing piece.

  3. Love the new look here Mike!..What a great idea for a painting and a workshop! Makes me want to drag out the watercolors and give it a try….These are NICE!

    Both versions of the tanker are wonderful as well!

    I really admire the way you explore a subject, using all your skill to draw out every facet of potential…Great job mike!

  4. Peggy . . .thanks for coming by. You know, as do I, that shape creation is both fun and challenging . . .this exercise is for that purpose to see what would emerge. I am hooked right now!

  5. Yo, Robin!! Man, you are NAILING your oils lately!! Instead of taking out your watercolors, you should build on what you do so well!! Sure do wish we could meet someday!

  6. Mike, I will stop in some Monday towards the end of your WBTO class. I am downtown for my drawing class those mornings. You’ll see me in the next few weeks unless you don’t have time to chat for a few minutes after your class. I miss you guys. I mentally relive Dordogne often.

  7. Just came to your blog from Milind’s. I’m not a watercolorist but seeing how beautiful yours are is very inspiring. I’m definitely adding you to my blogroll and will come back for more visits. Cheers, beautiful, very original work.

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