Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I have now finished the synopsis to my musical "Dance! You Fucking Jew!" which is an allegory of 20th century politics and contains scenes so amazing and wondrous it would be a definite hit and certainly educate the world about the horrors of war. The protagonist is David, a beautiful genius dancer who becomes the object of desire of the camp commandant who is a top hat fetishist and latent homosexual Fred Astaire fan. The main antagonists are a song and dance group made from transsexual SS officers who live in art deco luxury and wear fancy black dresses that make the normal German guards quite envious. I've noted the idea for future reference and might work out the basic song structure later. Tomorrow I begin painting "Two Parents Of A Very Lonely Child" which is about autism. My target for 2009 is to paint 50 paintings, release 3 CD's of music, write my first book (which may or may not be of poetry) and make my first video on the computer which will involve getting some extra equipment. My first solo exhibition is probable too, as the venue is already booked.
Today I awoke at 6am. I wrote a song then applied the imprimaturae to three paintings. I used ultramarine green shade, one of the most horrible of all blues, even worse than the angular robotic hue of phthalo, yet the warm neutrality of this shade of ultramarine is uniquely useful for imprematurae. That said when the tube runs out I might not replace it and use cobalt or the normal ultramarine instead which is my favourite blue. Then I drew my penis on the Apocalypse picture because my model doesn't have one. Matching the pose alone was a feat of amazing skill. For a good artist a good penis is absolutely essential for priapic poses of victory after performing wondrous technical events. Then I began to transfer this complex work to the panel. This effort took six hours during which meditative activity I had the idea for a spectacular musical set in Auschwitz which I'll try and sketch out this evening. For the next week I will underpaint new works and then, with the providence of desire, work on my album of songs for Steven which has needed doing for months.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

War And Energy

War is a chaotic system that requires energy to function. The energy is emotional energy created by the humans that participate or are affected by the conflict. War requires emotional energy to function and wars end when one side is demoralised and therefore lacking in sufficient energy to drive the system, which then stops becoming chaotic and enters a phase of stability (peace).

World War II was so successful for Germany despite a chaotic leadership because of the large store of emotional energy created during the 1930's. Fighting in the middle east persists because so many people worldwide get involved.

Any energy can affect the system in a chaotic way. This includes peace protests if they add energy, if they are antagonistic to one side or the other. The outcome of any antagonism is unpredictable because the system is chaotic, therefore even a protest that opposes one side might not favour that side in the conflict.

Conflict requires energy to succeed, it is known to all Buddhists that only a lack of action can create peace. Thus peace can only be achieved by either a sufficient lowering of energy on one side (defeat) or both sides (accepted peace; this normally happens when both sides have been fighting for a sufficiently long time that the energy has become naturally dissipated).

Conclusion

The most peaceful and direct way for a third party to achieve peace is to ignore a war. The most effective peace protest would involve a news blackout to actively avoid the input of emotional energy into the conflict system.
You can't create peace with antagonism, only knowledge. An an artist I can achieve more for peace than all of the politians and human rights lawyers put together! I will save that idea for my world events paintings. I've just finished transferring the drawing to Iterations of Isolation. My brother has just left so now I can refocus on work again. Tomorrow I want to start on my first work over a metre called Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Wars among humans is as inevitable as squabbles between cats. Getting up tight about them or choosing sides is idiotic. However wars are as dramatic as squabbles between cats which are as dramatic as a painting, which wars warm against cold, line against line, black against white and idea against idea. The panel for Insomnia is now prepared and the drawing transferred. I'm coming back to speed, although ironically suffering from somnia and finding it harder than ever to wake up. I generally need exactly nine hours of sleep but can happily sleep for fourteen hours.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The scan of Three Graves is now done. I use a flatbed scanner with an A4 sheet of glass on it to give me a level surface. Then I scan the painting in sections and use Photoshop to stitch the images together. The lid gets in the way so I can only scan from one edge, thus I'm limited to paintings 60cm in one dimension and about a metre in the other (due to the space I've got on the floor). The whole process takes about a hour for a six section, 50x50cm painting like Three Graves. Thanks to the excellent calibration on the scanner the colours are near perfect and never need adjustment, but the sheet of glass makes the surface slightly blurry and so needs post processing to allow a lifesize reproduction of sufficient quality.
I awoke late at nine thirty. Not a good start. Last night I drew, in idea size, the first outline of a Neurosigil of Drawing, my first intentionally unsurrealist painting idea. In the morning I finished drawing Insomnia Due To Impending Sacrifice and then became depressed, perhaps due to feelings of emotional jealousy or some irrational selfish desire or another. I don't know if I've ever felt depressed before, certainly not for many years. Either way I am unused to the mental pain and desire to sleep in the day, and decided to refocus my mind and spent an hour reasoning with the overly romantic brian cells that were sending me their messages of sadness and general concern for my well being. Afterwards I had become logical again, having told them that for the time being art and emotionlessness were my most important priorities. Then I began to transfer the underdrawings to "Insomnia" and "Isolation" using my normal method. I aim to scan Three Graves this evening.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Curse laziness! Curse impatience! Curse sugar! I'm sick of this inactivity. On the plus side, every disaster to me is now the need for rebirth when before it was a sign of doom. I'm growing sick of doom and becoming genuinely optimistic. My personality has changed enormously since September, more than ever in my whole life before. I'm now dying to work but tired and still a little unwell.

Most of my art is negative (even though my life is not that bad). However my isolated and sad paintings are making my life isolated and sad. My new mission is to paint new futures and they will happen. This idea will guarantee my success in 2009. When it works I will paint world events and make them happen too. I've always wanted to represent ideas in a way that the mind can understand, mere surrealism just represented the mind (which is mostly pointless; although has an aesthetic or analytical dimension. I am no decorative painter however, and psychiatry is best practised on one's own mind, once madness has been embraced first. The assumption of a sane psychiatrist is a clear sign of madness). Now I am reminded that I can change the mind from the outside. Even some of my earliest symbols began to enter my dreams only after I had painted them (is this unsurrealism?). If I can change the mind then I can change the universe, for what is the universe but the mind? Where is the universe without a mind to observe it? It's a comination of neurosymbolic programming and quantum physics. I'll now call it neuroquantum hypersigillic programming. Logically, my first N.H.P. paintings need to teach me how to paint better.
The main part of the modelling for "insomnia" is done. I've taken the unprecidented action of showing my model to the world. For this one I also need some ancient Arameic lettering and a sheep with spikes all over it like a hedgehog.
One of the worst things an artist can do is nothing and I've been doing far too much of that recently. My brother is here on a welcome visit but his presence is sapping vital days. Even worse than doing nothing is eating sugar and drinking alcohol. My new resolution is to do none of those things and to reassert my commitment to frugal living. Now, today I have transferred a tiny drawing to a panel for painting; next year's Christmas card. I'm now stalling for time before doing the plasticine modelling for a picture called Insomnia Due To Impending Sacrifice. I tend to carefully model, carefully photograph and carefully draw before I carefully paint a subject but perhaps I am too careful in these early and laborious procedures. Only careful painting is needed, yet looking back at some of the paintings of the last half of 2008 I fear that I've been careful on the other stages and too careless on the most important one. I resolve, again!! to paint patiently and perfectly. The seraph in The Art of Painting took three eight hour days despite being the size of the palm of my hand and that is about right. Now, "insomnia" calls.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

The Chasm Was Just Too Wide
Well today I'm past the worst stage of my virus and merely in the tickly cough phase. I've done little over the past few days but have managed to write two songs today and scan in one of the last two finished paintings of 2008; The Chasm Was Just Too Wide. I peg my larger drawings on my wall opposite me and there are currently two there; The Apocalypse of Finance is as dramatic as it sounds and will include butterflies and Lorenz attractors. The second, Iterations of Isolation is about how the isolated and unloved can develop fascist hatreds towards people. Both drawings are now complete and the surfaces are prepared although I need to work out the colours.

Friday, December 26, 2008

I'm currently in a state of physical distress brought on by a flu like virus that last night left me in agonies of feverish heat and spatial and auditory hallucination for the first time since I had chicken pox over a decade ago. Resting was difficult and compounded by Dali because Andrew Williams gave me Diary of a Genius as a Christmas present. It is about time I address the matter of Dali. My paintings are often compared to his, and I use similar techniques, not only because his book on painting was my guide but more importantly because, and this seems to be growing more true the more I learn about that man, I seem to think in exactly the same way and agree that efficient painting should be just that. Being naturally recalcitrant is an inherent and vital part of thinking like a surrealist because comparison using opposites is the essential ingredient of the surreal. As such I dislike being compared to Dali, as he does to me, and I seek to be different and seek out only those spaces that others vacate. That said, I agree with him on many points regarding art and understand absolutely his meaning on many matters, more than even his most devoted of critics (critics are more devoted than even ones closest friends). The emotion had gone from his works at some point in the 1940's and a quest to represent the deeper parts universe pictorially began, leading to fantastical looking works that baffled most people with their coldness and impressed some with their appearance but that is all. But I am no fan of Dali, I might agree on some points but seek to be different, better, avoid eccentricity of any form and be as normal and average as it is possible to be. I will learn only to avoid his lessons and be inspired only by the drips of technique and painting tips that tantalisingly litter his writings. I have my own things to forge. If I see any signpost at all I will know not to go that way.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Sniff. I presently sit with a pounding head and dizziness, all due to a virus which has for better or worse prevented me from eating anything sweet and from drinking anything alcoholic (thus, being the first flu in history to be beneficial to my health as it stopped the usual Christmas over indulgence). Despite this unpleasantness and despite the routine of the holiday I have made a fantastic and amazing discovery, the discovery of what I believe to be a whole new genre of art! This exctied me greatly and now consider it to be of great importance and will definately change my work in 2009. I will anounce and describe this formally soon enough. It is perhaps the culimination of the personality changes that have been taking place in me over the last few months. Perhaps these changes will continue but each change is already proving to be amazing and beneficial to me and my art. I would now like to go to bed although my headache might make lying down too painful and unpleasant, even for virally induced visions. Sniff.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Before painting I plan my pictures with a life sized drawing. I'm doing so at the moment for an ambitious painting about financial collapse and chaos theory called The Apocalypse of Finance. My five most important drawing tools are, in reverse order:
5. 75cm beam compass, among other compasses and templates for geometric shapes.
4. 1m metal ruler.
3. 60x100cm 12mm MDF board for drawing on.
2. Jakar battery eraser which I've modified to give it a hair tigger.
1. Pentel P205 automatic pencil, the king of pencils.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I'm in the planning stages of a painting now called The Apocalypse of Finance. It's a swirling earthquake of a picture and will be my first on a canvas I've stretched and prepared myself. The raw acrylic canvas I bought is amazing stuff, wonderful. Very tough, pigmented, and with the perfect surface texture. It has a visible canvas texture but a fine furry quality. When primed the 'fur' quckly incorporates itself allowing a perfect smoothness that I can't attain even on wood panels very easily.

For a first attempt at stretching and priming a canvas it came out well. A plastic scraper was ideal for spreading the early layers while the surface has some absorbancy but the sharp edges of the scraper proved problematical for the top layers. I'll try a sponge for those next time and perhaps spray the surface with water first to slow down the drying rate of the acrylic gesso.

Tip: To fix lumps, smooth, or remove ridges on acrylic gesso priming, wet sand it after spraying with a mix of alcohol and water. I use lavender water. The lavender plant is an artist's best friend.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


My curious painting Three Graves is now finished. It began as a 2D sketch and I shaded different elements to make it appear a bit more solid. The dagger and gravestone shapes are repeated in several sizes and orientations, like I tend to do in the cubisty abstracty ones I've done. Next in painting; more new ideas. My friend Andrew suggested painting something that would make people see the consequences of their actions and I've come up with a idea sketch for something about that.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Right, I'm back in painting mode now and with my new "full spectrum" lighting I should be able to withstand the winter darkness. Many works in progress; a painting about autism and the isolation of the nucleus of a hydrogen atom (yes!), one about the lack of physical contact in a relationship, "self-portrait as idiot wanker" is inspired by an unfortunate meeting and portrait by (I think) Duchamp. I also have many ready for glazing; Nine Ladies Weeping I've mentioned before is about Derbyshire, Three Graves about knife crime is slightly different in style for me, Female God is pure geometrical abstraction, Even Eating an Apple While God Looks on is related to that but more complex and includes a square apple, Chick Inside an Egg Dreaming of the Sky was inspired by Emmanuel Kant's philosophical ideas, The Chasm Was Too Wide is about the lack of communication in a relationship, Desparately Looking for Miro has been awaiting the final stages for months now and is no closer to completion. And there are several more in the sketch stage that I haven't thought about underpainting yet but tick! tick! tick! my life-clock taps its rhythm. I must start and finish these great works now so that I can start and finish more greater works in future. Tick! Tick! Tick! no time for minor works and mixed messages. The show must begin. Lights! Camera! Action! To arms!
For me it's not how you say it it's what you say. I was at the Sue Ryder exhibition opening evening in the Mall Galleries last night. There was quite a mix of work and a lot of weird highly abstracted work. One thing that struck me was the way the method of making some of the artwork was given great importance. I was told that one used pigment blown onto a wet ground using the dying breaths of old people(!) and one used icing sugar and food colouring squirmed onto the canvas with the artists' feet, as if paint and brushes were inadequate tools.

I think those artists have the wrong idea. How a painting is made is not relevant. Skill should be admired, and there is always room for a new technique if it adds something new to the end result, but an artwork should stand on it's own even if the viewer knows nothing about how it was made or who made it.

Insecurity Grasping For Freedom is currently on sale for the benefit of the Sue Ryder charity. Here is the link to view and purchase the painting online.

Friday, December 05, 2008

I've just ordered a good quantity of "acrylic canvas". I've not heard of any other painter that has tried this material (although painting on perspex, cast acrylic plastic, is more common). When 19th century painters chose linen they chose it because it was used for sails and was the toughest cloth around at the time. Now there are lots of tough materials used for sails, tarpaulins, tents, military armour and all sorts of things, and most of them are tougher than linen.

A good painting surface needs:

1. Physical toughness so that it won't rip or tear or shatter or turn to dust.
2. Resistance to moisture and sunlight and bacteria and insects!
3. A little bit of flexibility (for cloths) for stretching tightly.
4. Adhesion. Carbon Fibre or Kevlar are really tough but not stretchy and normally lacking adhesion, so your paint will fall off.
5. Stability. Something that won't change over time. Something that will remain elastic.

No material satifies all of the above but some are better than others.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

I've been working on the underpainting to Nine Ladies Weeping, the painting intended for the Derbyshire open next year. Aside from my creativity though I've been learning a lot about emotions, mind control, psychology and studying all sorts of other ways to improve myself and accomplish my goal of becoming the world's greatest artist. One year ago I never would have thought that surrealist painting would change my personality to the extent that it has. I will share my discoveries and explore my new ideas in next year's paintings.

Immediate next; new lighting to cope with the winter. I'd also like to paint my grave!