Monday, July 18, 2011

Words and Pictures

Evening Stillness
14 x 11


I am a word person. Or, at least, I am told that. I do love words and finding ways to use them. That influences my work. There is a notion out there that visual ideas and other kinds of ideas are two separate things and that when deciding on your concept or idea for your painting, you should think only in terms of visual ideas. But, our brains don't work that way. Everything we think and see comes together to form the sensations and thoughts we have. So, why should we try to paint that way? Why deny the rich and layered meaning of words and pictures?

10 comments:

Casey Klahn said...

Well put.

And the stillness shows through in an astounding manner. This is a great picture.

Stinson Fine Art said...

Great painting!

Deborah Elmquist said...

You are correct. Just the other day I heard a brilliant scientist--can't remember his name-- say that he wasn't able to visualize ideas so he had to work conceptually. It just reminds us that we need to work to our strengths whatever that may be. Your strength is words.

Deborah Paris said...

Thank you Casey. I appreciate that!


Thanks John!

Good point, Deborah! And thanks for your kind words.

MeeLi Lee said...

Beautiful! I agree that words are sometimes necessary along with the visual. Each can stand alone, but both complement each other-both sides of brain is utilized.

Caroline said...

A beautiful, elegant painting Deborah, the colour choices are perfect. Very poetic in it's stillness.

Brian McGurgan said...

Beautiful stillness, Deborah, and I love the rose-colored cast of the sky. This will be a great example for your "Painting Water" class.

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

You are so right! Why deny what you love and what is an obvious strength?

What niggles at me is wondering if by using my words (in a title or in a blog post that describes the painting) I am directing the viewer in such a way that it covers up inadequacies in the painting. With my words, it makes sense. Without them, maybe not. I won't know now because I've put the words there.

Deborah Elmquist said...

Katherine's comment is the major division between 19th and 20th Century art (there may be some exceptions). The 20th Century painters needed the words or stated message for the art to make sense. The 19th Century work stands on its own without words. Not right or wrong, just different.
Deborah, you may think in words but your work stands on its own-just beautiful!

Deborah Paris said...

Thanks Everyone. I think the work has to stand on its own- without the words or titles to support or explain it. However, I do think that words can provide the initial concept and inspiration. For example in this piece that word was "stillness". I hope that even if I had not used it in the title, the painting would still evoke that idea.