Like visiting an old friend

February 17, 2019

People often ask me 'How do I paint?'. A very open ended question really. Difficult for a lot of artist's including myself to answer.


I like the 'just doing' with the no or very little thinking aspect of things. Thinking is the start of stopping. With art I suppose that's easy for me to say. I've been painting and producing art work for a number of years. Everything or at least most things are intuitive and come as second nature. Being in touch but letting go and being in control but taking no control. What I'm trying to say is just let it happen. This has been learnt over time though - the hard way.


It's about tapping into what's already there. Your're trying to allow something to be something. No resistance, no thinking. 'Go and be with the flow' as they say. This can be really difficult to find and to allow to happen.


My main work is abstract painting. A lot of people believe abstract work is easy. You just get a brush and go at the canvas as you please - right? Maybe and by doing so that can/could be a art. For me and my work though - wrong. A big wrong. So how do I do this then? How do I this with no thinking?


This is where the old friend comes in. Some of my canvases can take weeks, months, even more sometimes. A lot of going back and forth to the canvas itself. I find each painting becomes like a story and has it's own conversation. So each time I come back to the canvas, it's like visiting an old friend. Every brush stroke, palette knife mark is a considered movement but with no thinking. A visit  to the canvas is a return to the conversation from where we left off. Carrying on the conversation with the old friend. That's how I paint.   






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© John Bracey Fine Art