This painting is at the George Billis Gallery in New York. It’s another in a series of paintings I have been doing by revisiting my portfolio and applying a new technique to subjects I have painted in the past 17 years.
The first time I painted a fan, I had a quick technique and was finished the painting in a few hours.
I think being a young father with a 2-year-old son and a 3-month-old daughter may have had something to do with how little time I had to paint. We had also just moved in to a new house that needed major work and I had a job at a university.
I have distinct memories of feeling this crunch of getting a painting done, racing to the finish line, before my son woke up from a nap. I also painted in the evenings for several years, tired and beleaguered.
I am completely on the other side now. Teenaged kids who require no nap times and they occupy themselves marvellously. I left my job and paint full time in a house that needs no work. Goals achieved. I have the next several decades (hopefully) to paint uninterrupted.
Many of these Penguin Classics are the books that you should have read when you were in your teens, but probably wouldn’t have understood fully until you were in your thirties. It is available through the Elliott Fouts Gallery.
Giving these books a try early on in life is good but I have personally found that revisiting them later makes them way more relevant. These books are written by people who had a full spectrum of experiences and knowledge and I am only now finding that I understand where they come from. Read more
I found this book, The Way To Win, and had to add it to my little late 19th Century library of books that reveal the way our people were thinking just over 100 years ago. The book is a very detailed, very long self-help style book from a John T. Dale.
I found a bunch of Penguin Classics that I’ll be featuring in some upcoming paintings — this painting is the first study.
Nineteen Eighty-Four is one of my favourite books. Although it is fascinating, I actually don’t fear that the world depicted in it is the one we live in. It’s more like the one we are afraid we live in, and the truth is we actually live in a Brave New World which seems equally as terrifying.
I like to find obscure books with titles that suggest the subject beyond just a couple of books. Sometimes the suggestion is obvious, sometimes not. I prefer when it’s not as it means the painting can mean any number of things to any viewer. To me they’re akin to haiku poetry – the paintings are to suggest mood and ideas.