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Creative Explorations (Art in the Time of Covid)

Abstract Painting: Tentatively Titled Abstract 104

Tentatively Titled: Abstract 104

Oil and Cold Wax, 8x8 inches

Things are so very odd in our world right now. So many things are pushing and pulling on each of us as we cope with the fears and realities of the impact the Covid pandemic is having on us all. I don’t know about you, but it really messed with my ability to focus as I worked to try to understand the flood of information and misinformation and what was real versus sensationalized fears. It really made it very hard for me to feel creative and focus on my artwork. To be honest, for the first few weeks I wasn’t producing much of anything it seemed. It all felt a bit alien to me.

But, in times of struggle can sometimes come great opportunities for exploration and growth. For me, I stumbled across an opportunity to follow along online with some free art workshops in a new and different medium – abstract paintings done with oil paint and cold wax medium. (A big shout out and thank you to Sally Hirst - you can see her lessons on this on YouTube).

I can hear you now – “Say what?” If there was ever a time to try something outside my comfort zone, I figured this was it – I was already uncomfortable because of the virus! I have only ever done one other abstract so this was a chance to try something completely outside my normal wheelhouse using tools and materials I already had on hand, and others I was able to craft from things around the house. It was also something I could create on paper which wouldn’t feel so much like I was being wasteful if I didn't ‘get it right’. This type of artwork happens through lots of layers of colors, textures and mark making. It is all just intuitive creative flow (informed by a bit of color theory I've learned along the way in painting). If it all came out horrible, well, it was just paper and paint and so easy to throw away, right? Soooo… I gave it whirl. And, I had fun! Some of what I did I’m still working on and may still wind up trashed, but some I rather like! Who knew?

Don't worry about my realistic pieces though, a side benefit in this for me has been that just relaxing into the creative play of this has eased my worries and helped restart my other creative juices. So, I’m doing more painting in my realism genre now too.

Here are some more of my abstract "works in progress":

(lots of layers of texture and detail in these, click on any image to see it larger)

What do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts on my new explorations.

Have you found yourself trying new things during the long days and hours at home too?


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