Wind Whips

I’m working on a new series of mosaics for my  showcase exhibition “Voices of the Wind” at Somerset Crafts in May. It’s a tight deadline but I’m hoping to produce at least 4 new pieces .

My first piece is called “Wind Whips“.

This was the first drawing:

First Sketch for Wind Whips

First Sketch for Wind Whips

I liked the black “whips” streaming out from the grasses and whipping around in the wind. It was a spontaneous sketch, just a doodle really, with the wind in my head!

But I wanted a different format. I felt that the grasses had to have more impact, take up more space, almost as if they were suffocating me. As I sketched out another picture, some of the paintings by Surrealist Max Ernst began to surface in my thoughts,  especially his painting “La Joie de Vivre (The Joy of Life)”, where the grasses fill the canvas and the spaces in your head. In his painting you get lost in the grasses and you are fascinated and (in days gone by) disturbed by the strange bugs and insects.

You can see how my mind was working as I made my second sketch. There had to be enough sky to show the wind lines and the streaming “whips” but  I had to keep adding more grass to the bottom of the picture to get that feeling of suffocation.

second sketch (cartoon) for wind whips

second sketch (cartoon) for wind whips

Looking at the sketch now I could see that the bird wasn’t quite in the right place. So I re-placed him on my cement board when I traced out the cartoon. I also decided to follow the field line to make the sky more wavy and windy.

Detail of Wind Whips in progress

Detail of Wind Whips in progress

Then I threw caution to the winds by letting the sky break free to follow some of the whips!

detail2-wind-whips-progress

… and finally

Wind Whips

Wind Whips

Detail of Wind Whips

Detail of Wind Whips

Come back soon to see my second new piece for the series.

🙂

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4 thoughts on “Wind Whips

  1. I love it if you’d tell us the size of this mosaic….thanks. A comment on the transition of the drawings, if you don’t mind(?): I liked the first drawing better than the second because it showed the black whips coming out from the grass so the movement of the grass was the same in the whip and vigourous. You brought that energy back in the final product, which I like.. The sky complements the movement, as well. Another good mosaic, and I’m looking forward to #2 🙂
    I am learning a lot from you, thank you very much. I’m learning how to translate imagination into images more coherently and more consistently, does that make sense? In fact, I’m going to try doing a series to explore different themes of one image: it will be the burnt stump I told you about, which sits right outside my kitchen window over the sink, so I see it many times a day. I was inspired to do my stump (a mother’s day present from my son!) after seeing what you developed from your ash tree. Guess, I’d better go and get busy!

    • Hi Bev. The piece is about 50 x 50 cm (20″) and it will be a bit bigger once framed. I know what you mean by the first drawing having more energy in the grasses. As I added sections to the bottom on the second drawing the grasses bent over less and I considered a third drawing to make them blow about more. But I decided I liked it as I also wanted to get the “lost in the grass” feeling, and I think having some upright grasses helped to suggest this. I’m glad you think I brought the energy back in the final piece, I think the tones and the lines of the sky helped to achieve it. My friend Ian thinks the whips on the grasses have become a bit lost in the confusion of the sky, and no-one would understand what they were if I didn’t explain them, perhaps he is right, but I also like that suggestion of ambiguity! Good luck with your stump – I’ll pop over to your blog and see how it looks.
      🙂

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