Friday, March 25, 2011

Project in Acrylic - Part III

7. In Search of Love and Peace
I did these covers right after I saw the documentary "Exit through the Gift Shop". It is a fascinating (and maybe faux - though I can't tell) documentary on street art and the narrator is Banksy who is perhaps the most amazing;y talented and creative street artist out there. His stencils are so unique and evocative! The girl with the balloon is the only cd cover where the theme is copied directly from somewhere. I couldn't resist as this is my second favorite after the girl with the baloons on the West Bank wall. For this one I did want to get the background just right. I thought of replicating the texture there is on a wall and decided to make it pink and white to retain the innocence that I associate this with.

I decided to keep the second in the series very simple with single strokes depicting a dove with the heart-shaped balloon. You can't tell, but the main theme in this painting is really the background. I wanted to get a bright and shiny background to offset the pink and white dove and heart. This background actually took me an hour as I did several layers and created a 'hatched' texture with a very thin needle. This created depth without giving the rough edge that is there in the other paintings.
It was easy to pick the photo-themes for this CD cover. I thought the dove with the Buddha and the heart at the feet of Ganesh captured why I did this painting.

8. The Siren's Song
This CD cover happened almost immediately after I saw Neil Jordan's 'Ondine'. It is the story of a fisherman played by Colin Farrell who find a girl in his fishing net and starts to believe that she is a mermaid when his luck changes. It is a wistful and haunting movie and if this is how Jordan does fantasy then I wish he would do a lot more....
I wanted to make a painting that was story-book but at the same time sort of rough.
I decided to make a turbulent sea but like the Phoenix painting, I thought of communicating the turbulence through my strokes and decided on a yellow ochre base with lemon and white. I used 3 different size brushes to get the effect before the paint dried. The base came out so beautifully that I was afraid to paint too much over it :). I was thinking of Neeru and how she would like the story of the Little Mermaid and knew that the mermaid had to have red hair! There are no real details except the sort of wind-blowing and waves billowing at her feet. I wanted to avoid making the waves like typical strokes, so instead in a moment of inspiration, I decided to put the paint into my toothpaste cap and dab on the 'waves'. The effect was exactly as I wanted it!

9. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
I was reading Alexander Pope's poem again sometime last week - parts of it that I have written down, not all of it - it is a looooong poem!.... The poem reminded me of Clementine and Joel and I wanted to make a painting that captured Eloisa and ultimately Clementine's quest for forgetfulness ...

How happy is the blameless vestal's lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each Pray'r accepted, and each wish resign'd ...

When I started this painting I knew I would make a literal 'head full of sunshine' theme but I also knew that it would be Clementine and not Joel. Maybe because her idiosyncrasies makes her the most honest character in the entire movie for me. The painting is flat but the deepest texture is in the head. I painted about 4 layers in the same colour but every time with a little more texture. I wanted it to represent the fact that deleting memories from the mind just whitewashes things keeping the deeper experiences and the changes in our soul intact.

In conclusion, the complete set of 10+1 CD covers with the special last one made with the option to delete :).



  1. :-) :-) :-) is all I can say. Mons you always were an artist. I still remember your sketches pinned up on the Class V noticeboard. You have an innate flair for art which comes from a love for art in any form, be it music, or fine arts or theatre..... do canvasses beckon now Mon Ami? Loads of love!

  2. I can't believe I didn't read this before :) Did I really have my sketches pinned up on the class wall? I don't remember that at all!!!! I have this image of me as the nerdy maths girl with really super duper artistic friends (you know who you are ) :). You know I have been thinking of canvas for a while now and for a need to formalize this -- I would like to learn. Private lessons for me? Pretty Please.... with sugar .....