While I typically work from direct observation, I’ve recently been working on ways of inventing imagery, i.e. making things up. While this kind of working has a long tradition in Western Art, (think: almost anyone before Courbet) I’ve been encountering serious obstacles in painting the unseen. Two of the largest problems I’m encountering in this work are freshness and color complexity- two things that come easily in observational painting.
To alleviate this gap between the mind and the eye, I’ve been sketching out paintings from memory. I think of some of my favorite paintings and try to recall general atmosphere, composition, and color masses and paint them as quickly as I can recall them. Painting from a fragmentary memory keeps things fresh, while the original artists furnish the good stuff. This one is different from the original in some amusing ways, yet captured some key elements. Can you guess what painting I was thinking of?