Add visual abstraction to make your paintings more interesting
Give your work a freshness and a sense of visual abstraction. Watch this quick video segment of me painting in Morocco and read the blog post below for tips on how I do this.
If you want to create visual music in your work, you need to create a mosaic of colors on your painting. Think of it as a quilt or mosaic of colored tiles. To do this, put a brushstroke down and then leave it. Don’t keep modifying the brushstroke until it becomes a blended mush, or looks like a tile that has been broken into lots of bits. If you do that you’ll lose the mosaic and a lot of the quality of visual music in your work that gives it a freshness and a sense of visual abstraction.
If you look at the video closely, you’ll see me putting down a confident brushstroke, then leaving it alone.
Cat. No. 1314 Marrakesh Alley – 20cm x 15cm – Oil on Canvas
In Marrakesh, Morocco the streets are very narrow and pedestrians have to contend with motorbikes on some of them. You soon learn to walk on the right, and if you don’t the locals remind you so you don’t get squashed!
The light of Morocco is absolutely wonderful. No wonder the 19th century French artists painted there. It’s an incredible place for artists.
The painting for me captures the feeling I had when I was there. But the photo seems to have captured very little of the true feeling. I think this has a lot to do with the photograph not recording the strong reflected light very accurately. But the method I used to paint the shadows and using visual abstraction seems to much better represent the extremely strong reflected shadows in that street.
Update: Thank you to everyone who voted for my painting in the BoldBrush Painting Competition, to make it one of the FAV15% winners.