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Ingrid Lee, is an international award winning artist in modern porcelain painting, abstract expressionist acrylic and mixed media paintings, fabric art. She teaches masterclasses and creates collaborative art projects to share creativity and inspire art enthusiasts in Australia and overseas. When she’s not painting or writing, she’s baking and tending her rose garden. For information about Ingrid’s exhibitions, masterclasses, projects or commissions contact ingridleeart.com ingridleeart.com
I started this painting at the beginning of December, and it is still on the go (yes the other porcelain paintings I’ve been working on are still being worked on too…but things dry at different times, kiln firings take time, so I maximise my time! ). This post is to document my thinking through this painting and where I am at during this series of art works about Destiny and Love…it’s a long post. This series of artworks has been an interesting journey, one of bringing up old feelings, sharing experiences which are personal, or had been locked away, thinking and observations of love over the years, inspirations from what I read and music I listen to…and while I paint and explore, I expect that the works will represent the thinking through my understanding of the concepts. This is one of the largest paintings I’m working on in the series of Destiny and Love, it’s 152 cm x 90cm…I have not given it a title yet.
I have been researching Tenebrist painting, particularly the works of female Italian Baroque painter Artemisia Gentileschi.
Her paintings left an impression on me since I first saw her work at a Melbourne exhibition in 2004 (I will write about this in another blog post). The use of extreme contrasts of light and dark in figurative compositions to reflect drama is a technique which is of particular interest. While my current painting is not figurative nor technically tenebrist, (my other paintings using this technique will be different, talk about this later), this painting is the first process of discovery for communication of style and thought of an adaptation of it. For this painting, I wanted to use my techniques of layering intense complimentary colours in contrast to darker background, to show reveal the composition and forms (in place of the figure), in abstract expressionist style.
Here is the first layer of undercolours and combinations of intense colours.
As the painting has progressed, the darker values are working to create the contrasts and mood. I do not work with black, I prefer to create a richness which balances throughout the painting and mix with my own darkest values, and contrasting them with complimentary colours to grey them down or make them pop. The paints I use are a flow consistency, not structural, so they are easier to build up with thin layers of glazing. For me I still want life in the painting, and to utilize the idea of movement in the background of the painting, as shown in Velazquez’s work, I will see how this approach goes.
…still a long way to go….
So how does this connect to Destiny and Love?
Destiny….how do I understand it now, after 8 paintings (I haven’t shared all completed art works at the moment, I have planned for about 20 more)???? Is destiny the result of wanting what you want today, but realising that it takes longer to have what you desire, and what you desire will truly come in time? I think that concepts I’ve explored in the paintings so far direct my thinking that all things will come in perfect time, and that we should enjoy the journey while finding what it is we want…maybe this is destiny.
The biggest part of my journey through these paintings has resulted in my learning about how to deal with my relationship between impatience and time- something which also I have learned about through love. So I think that destiny is a journey, not a finite thing that will result in happiness or unhappiness, it’s not about getting what you want, but what you are going to discover about yourself.
Through abstract expressionism I have been able to communicate my actions and immediate feelings and responses to experiences and observations about Love and Destiny. Through this whole journey, which started as far back as the creation of Ingrid-creates, and my exhibition of Journey for the artistic soul in Russia, and my research for this current series of paintings, I have realised that I am not fearful of feeling or expressing my feelings and thoughts because I have come to realise, that that which makes me sad or disconnected, or fearful is really an energy and experience which can I use to transcend from those shadows toward finding light and hope, this is the path to the journey of finding love…maybe. This painting in particular represents that transcendence. So this journey of being connected to my feelings and expectations of what I want is going to reveal something wonderful.
What this journey is…is not about romantic love, this is about love for myself, learning to express those feelings connected with our everyday perceptions of love, but really what I have been destined to do, as I understand it, is to find and understand the passion within, harness it, by making the choice to create my experiences.
I will wait to see how this painting finishes…..
Another painting on porcelain in this series “Maybe it’s Love”
I’m working on a few new porcelain paintings at the moment, and planning others. This week I had some new porcelain shapes delivered, and I’m planning a painting for the Destiny and Love series (see latest porcelain painting) with the use eyes as the feature. I have used this subject matter before (click here to see) and for this painting, I’m looking at expressing the notion of introspection when you are not in love, but really wishing you were, and questioning why you’re not in a relationship with someone. So I’m looking at the intense relationship we have within our head and selves when we don’t want to be alone and are desperate to be be in love, and looking at the representations that reflect the broken record that plays in our minds of “why doesn’t he/she…?” “why can’t I find someone who….?” “I’ll never find…” “nobody wants me” “why can’t I look like/be like…” for example. This process of introspection often causes us to stay trapped in our heads….it can be paralyzing, tiring, hurtful, loathsome, saddening, makes us angry, and even pitiful when we ask “why me again” etc…Sometimes we can spend so much time looking into ourselves, not accepting ourselves and loving ourselves for who we are, that we miss the moment for the next relationship. It is this intensity of introspection that I’m wanting to express.
So, the eyes are the subject matter to communicate this process of looking into our selves and the internal dialogue within. Here are some of the sketches I’ve done. I want to create an expressionist painting on porcelain, so I don’t want the eyes to be realistic, but to explicitly convey the emotions of the self dialogue. So I set myself the task of spending no more than 3 minutes per drawing to capture the expression…as I went, the drawings became less detailed- I think this is the style of work I’m going to use. Next I’ll sort out the design for the porcelain, and medium to use….I’m looking forward to this painting
My new porcelain from http://
Why Destiny and Love?
This blog post is a continuation on exploring my next series of art works around the themes of Destiny and Love. The initial idea for these works stemmed from my last trip to St Petersburg, where (apart from my own exhibition of works which are still there- being taken to another gallery soon ) I was asked to paint about my inspiration or reflections about Dostoevsky’s writings, as I had already done a painting reflecting Gogol’s “The Portrait” for my exhibition in SPb…thanks Valeri Ivanov . I did not have a lot of time to paint my impressions during my stay, but I decided upon an artwork which was inspired by Dostoevsky’s short story “White Nights.”
I hadn’t read this short story before, but I am thankful for my meeting in SPb with the brilliant photographer Nikolay Krusser (his Fan Page on facebook) for this suggestion, and our chat about destiny and this piece of literature. After I had read the novel and analysed my notes about the concepts, I wrote a short interpretation of what inspired my thinking around the major concepts Dostoevsky explores to then allow the images to form in my mind over the next day.
“Dostoevsky- White Nights” 2012, Ingrid Lee Acrylics
One fleeting chance with love in a city so familiar, yet so lonely- is it destiny? Dostoevsky explores the notion of love, loneliness and destiny, in the short story ‘White Nights.’ In this painting, the ‘yellow’ city of St Petersburg surrounds us with warmth and familiarity, but the endless dreaming and feelings of isolation from both the city and the possibility of finding love for the narrator in this story, eventually leads him to loneliness.
While he dreams of finding love in a city which is becoming alien to him, these dreams appear to come true. So the depths of his passion envelopes his soul, and when he finally reaches out to his one love, it is questionable as to whether this relationship will fulfil his destiny and end his loneliness. Sadly this love is unrequited, and there emerges the darkness of loneliness, in a fleeting moment of finding love. Ingrid Lee May, 2012.
Here is a small part of the art work I painted for the White Nights piece, originally it was to be a diptych, but I ran out of time to complete the second painting…but now I will repaint a new version of this where I have time to think about the clarity of my expression; and perhaps the ideas are better expressed over a few paintings.
I liked the initial raw response to the concepts I explored…how ever now I have had time to think more cohesively about a bigger picture and story, rather than one isolated impression.
My painting of “The Air That I Breathe” as discussed in a previous post, and “White Nights” stem from understandings about love, self love and what is destined on that journey; it is these understandings which will draw a common thread through all of the art works in this series. To read more about my inspirations of Love, please read a series of blog posts I wrote for my other website Ingrid Creates
Please let me know what you think about my work or creative processes in the comments, I’d love to hear from you
In this post, I’ll explain the Steps of an Artist’s creative process by exploring the background to this painting, as well as explain how and why this new series of art works has been inspired. The style of this painting is abstract impressionism, and I think that this post will give some insight to you, about this approach to painting- it’s more than just random splodges of colour! Hopefully if you enjoy my art works, which I assume you do or you wouldn’t be sharing my art world with me, some of you might be interested in a small insight to my creative processes (if not, I hope you enjoy the pictures all the same LOL).
Painting : “The Air That I Breathe”
Here is the completed painting of “The Air that I Breathe.” I have added a few close up images to show the detail and more accurate colourings. There will be a few more works in this series, and they are relating the the notion of Destiny and Love. The concepts will be explored as new art works develop, revealing my understandings and impressions as I go on this new journey.
As I briefly explained in a previous post, “The Air That I breathe” was inspired by k.d Lang’s cover of this song. I have been listening to a wide range of music which is supporting this theme of destiny and love, which I am exploring throughout this series of works. Note, that each art work in this abstract impressionist style is created differently; this is only one process, but what is similar across of my art work, is that this process moves dynamically.
For this painting in particular, if was k.d’s vocal interpretation and arrangement of the song which initially stimulated the feel and colours, the ambiance of the works. The phrasing and tempo is what I interpret for the initial conceptualisation of the work (and again when completing the top layers of work). So, I sing with k.d (yes I can sing and used to perform as an amateur many years ago ) and interpret the music first, just as I would reading the words for lexical and literary device of a novel or poem for interpretation. After I have a concept in my mind of this initial interpretation, I explore the lyrics, and which ones are most poignant to me to start understanding the forms and shapes I will use- this is largely for a rough idea.
This is the underpainting, which is also transparent through the middle sections of the final artwork, but lays the foundations to the main concepts. These background colours represent the deep desires, wishes dreams for love, but at some stage there is a place where love is found within ourselves, making the true love we are to give and receive and grow from a self love and place of peace.
The lyrics about “Sometimes all I need is the air that I breathe” can be seen in the final build up of transparent layers surrounding the core, with small embers of the heart burning contently as a new type of understanding of loves brings calm and peace. The use of gold with the white paint in the middle ground, creates a sense of warmth. This is a technique I used a lot in my exhibition work for SPb, and I have used it to create the ambiance and atmosphere of lightness and peace.
If you’d like to know more about what inspired the focus of Destiny and Love for this series of art works, please read my next blog post- it all started in St Petersburg