Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Pennine New Work Demonstration (continued) abstraction-form Rob Miller

Abstract landscapes form and formless what are they and how do we get into them..I have posted three detailed images from the same piece of work and a page of my sketch book. Below this are a couple of short paragraphs on painting theory of form and formlessness as a part of a discussion on abstraction. I suppose in a way we could call this almost the dialectic of painting today..





Working both in the sketch book and on the easel its not unusual to begin to abstract from form and corresponding formlessness as I seek to examine and understand the object that I have in mind and simultaneously its relationship to what exists around it. Technique can also take me further along the abstraction route; If this happens than its here at this point that my work starts to get much more interesting; why? because I am getting more stimulus from the materials that I am using then I am from the object that I am studying...the initial view, the moment of inspiration and the reaction to paint colour texture is all in the mix.....The question is how far do we abstract and when do we stop abstracting...For example..do we paint the branch or do we examine the colour of the air between branches which is equally important? If we just paint the space and there isn't a reference to the branch than is this abstraction...if it is from whose side the painter or the viewer is it abstraction..yes easy for the painter to remember his journey but not as easy  for the viewer, who if they wish to experience the process of creativity as much as the finished work would need an explanation of the process, which in turn, at least for me would negate the point of providing the visual reference, which is  the painting itself....Rob Miller.

"Form is on the one hand the external appearance of objects and on the other the mental model that helps us identify them. We recognise forms by their structure which is is determined by the objects outline or its interior skeleton As we look at it we relate what we see to our past visual and other experiences in our memory. Perceptively we don't need to see the whole form to recognise it similar to the fact that a sentence written with all the right words but with each words middle section jumbled can still be read correctly...

The painter can work anywhere along this continuum from a copy of reality through to a complete abstraction where form is no longer recognised....all can be enjoyed as a visual learning experience by both artist and viewer...

Form and how it is perceived...Abstraction is an image in which we cannot identify known forms of reality. This does not mean that reality does not contain abstract forms , for example the wear and tear of an old door, the structure of a building or the view through trees...

Abstract landscape paintings are both abstract and a landscape. This method of painting can involve a great deal of creative expression either by altering scenery that exists in real life or by creating an imagined setting. The abstraction can be done without any symbolic significance or the abstraction can represent an idea and express the artists' inner emotions and feelings. Abstract landscape paintings are intentionally different from what exists in real life. The artist has freedom to use an unrealistic color palette, exaggerate forms, and use details and texture that express just about anything the artist is feeling. Abstract landscape paintings can offer the viewer another way of seeing the natural environment. Some artists abstract the landscape by breaking it down into simple colors and shapes. Others go so far as to try and express the energy of life and nature. They manage to communicate a sense of human emotion using the earth, air, fire, and water elements. Because these paintings utilizes characteristics from the abstract art movement it is not uncommon to find unusual materials in the painting. For example an artist may add sea shells, leaves, sand, string, and many other materials. These paintings often have visual or tactile texture. The artist can also emphasize qualities of light in different ways by using iridescent or metallic paint. Expressing the creative mind and spirit, abstract landscape paintings display an interwoven connection with man and nature. While the abstract landscape artist seeks to create a composition that is different and unique, there is always a subtle familiarity. It is this intrigue of strange and familiar that can capture the viewers attention and allow for a variety of interpretations."

abridged versions of an ezine by Jason Canianelli and selected excerpts from Maria Fernanda Caral in creative oils 2008 Barcelona..

Rob Miller

Thursday, 20 January 2011

West Pennine Farm demonstration details Rob Miller

Posted by Picasa"When soothed a while by milder airs
Thee winter in the garland wears
That thinly shades his few grey hairs
Spring cannot shun thee
Whole summer fields are thine by right
and automn meloncholy Wight
Doth in thy crimson delight
when rains are on thee"
'Daisy'  Wordsworth

Sketchbook work West Pennine Moors Rob Miller

I had a good walk over the moors today taking the old Road. This winter the moors have been under a cover of snow or iced rain for most of the last three months resulting in a deeper red brown colour, with flashes of pale grasses. The deep red colour comes from the bracken, its Latin name Pteridium, which has grown here in these sub Arctic conditions for millennial, interestingly the name comes from the norse language. The bracken which has been here the longest has been the source of many a fight from the 1750's onwards between itself and the hill farmers who have tried to burn it rake it, and bury it by ploughing it under. The effect of all this for me is the multitude of coloured patchworks which are so great to paint. Today as well as mooching mentally over bracken I also saw an Arctic hare which as usual was trying to hide in the grass its white coat making it stand out like a sore thumb against the deeper red bracken...
Sketchbook work a drawing in mixed media of above
Broadhead Road. Left hand scene
Sketchbook work a drawing in mixed media of above
Broadhead Road. Middle scene
Sketchbook work a drawing in mixed media of above
Broadhead Road. Right hand scene
Sketchbook notes West Pennine.
life tires
death tires
the stone tires
only the river never tires
elmet ted hughes
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Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Pennine Farm near Helmshore Lancashire Detail of a Rob Miller painting

Of all the work that I have undertaken this last year Its this series where I revisit the place were I started my sketchbooks that has proved the most interesting on a personal level. The West Pennines or more so those hills bordering the Rossendale Valley.  Here  are a  few  detail shots of  the painting as promised...the place is  Chatterton Farm which lies above the Holcombe to Helmshore Road, all so typical of the Pennines.  My next piece tomorrow  is another revisit of a similar location, a high moorland farm down the road from todays viewopoint..

I've attached below a section from my diary, which I keep next to the easel in the studio so that I can keep the memory of a living landscape alive and moving in my mind...

Chatterton FarmHouse

Chatterton Farm new Barns

Meadow details scrapped palette

Farm house edge detail palatte knife and brush



Sketchbook notes  "For 2 weeks the snow lay over the damp ground and then came rain, damp, cold. On  this January day, even the evening arrived before the morning had come,  its light blue sky fading all to quickly to dusky mauve, and the blue itself was nothing to talk about,  a thin shred that screamed across the sky in a moment, held prisoner by two ragged bands of dirty yellow, grey-white. Crooked walls,  green with algae sprung from the brown sedge and the dead grass that lay between held more light in its creamy soggy stalks than did the sky. Above all this  damp scene a flash of orange yellow caught my eye,  was it a warm fire flickering between the bright green bows of the aspen or the run of heather that caught a  sun blink that even the eye could not see, whatever it was, it was gone now and the night had come in, wraiths of damp cloud and mist merging splitting and merging until grey became greyer and I still hadn't drawn the house details, as I was trying to draw in the strong wind perched on the warm car bonnet, the farmhouse and its escorts  straddled the ridge, just a grey triangular algae wall of damp stone,  a square that was maybe a window and now in its place a spot another orange yellow, but this time a lamp lit in a window, swirling flickering as greyer became night and night became rain and rain became sleet and sleet turned black...The cars old  engine still ran, I turned and throwing my soggy sketch into the passenger seat I sat for a while with the car lights off, warming my frozen fingers and watching the light across the fields,  imagining the farmer bent over the hearth, the sheep huddled by the lee wall as I turned back towards  my studio in Tesco town..Rob Miller. Chatterton Farm Jan 2011



Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Jen and Scotts wedding painting (work in progress)


Jen and Scotts wedding painting in progress
acrylic on canvas
50cmx77cm
 Though its freezing cold still and I'm full of a winter bug  its kind of bone warming to be painting a hot beach scene, with golden light sand, white clouds drifting over,  and and endless ripple of small waves across an expanse of blue green water onto the beach. I'm relying largely on my memory of a recent trip to Andalucia and a stroll we did, last Wednesday along the deserted beach near Sotogrande,  it was a nice 24C and the sun hot on my face, I'm also relying on a photo image taken by Scott. I hope its what you want guys?
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