One hot summer’s day, a few years ago I lay on the lawn looking my oil painting of lilies on canvas for a high tech. kitchen. White Rabbit whispered “not right lady, capture the gleam, clean lines; be cutting edge!” That’s when I went through the looking glass (or clear acrylic to be precise) and haven’t looked back.
I experimented to create my own way to paint on clear glass or acrylic. The picture is viewed from the smooth side. This not only protects the picture but creates unusual depths. I am painting a mirror image.
The first paint I put on comes to the forefront and the last colour the background. Imagine putting on the eyelashes of a face first. I can’t paint over any mistakes in fact it is pretty near impossible to erase anything without scratching the glass. This is one reason my work takes on its own life and is spontaneous.
Not all paints take to such a surface. Glass paints are superb as they let the later layers of paints can shine through; acrylics provide the bold more solid colours. I like to paint in a way that engages imagination, a bit Art Nouveau in the way the details swirl. All my work is original; it would be complex to take prints and I can’t reproduce the same picture. This is an advantage to purchasers as each work is unique, but from my point of view it means I can lose my favourites forever.
My work has rapidly taken off with repeat sales and lots of gallery interest. I love seeing people’s reaction to my paintings. They often stare intently, touch it, look a bit amazed and ask how on earth it is painted. People who have my paintings tell me they love the way the paintings subtly change perhaps with different lighting or comments from other viewers and the painting becomes more and more a part of them.
Framing is a challenge. The usual spacer bolt system is too clumsy and detracts from the delicate pictures. I mount onto solid black sleek “frames” that are simply hung. Sometimes I can use other colours or bevelled glass.
Another challenge is how to convey my art through the internet. It’s easy to imagine how a canvas painting looks from a photograph. My paintings are intricate, some are semi reflective, have metallics or changing hues. These aspects enhance wall space, but are difficult to capture on camera. I looked at the main art sites. Artgallery.co.uk was best suited as they allowed lots of description and several photographs of each piece.
Sometimes my paintings don’t work; my materials are expensive and cost more than canvas art to transport. But, I enjoy developing reverse painting; each painting is involving, new and exciting. When someone says they love my painting and want to own it… I’m in Wonderland, there’s no going back though the looking glass!
Hope you enjoy my work Jan