This might be one of the most unique pieces in this collection. ‘Mirage’ represents a wholly different way of working than the other oil paintings in this collection: rather than working from a model, still life or photo, this piece began with abstract mark making, out of which a face simply emerged.
I was inspired to try this method after purchasing a beautiful dreamy ink painting by the fine artist & illustrator, Vanessa Lemen. Bringing the piece home inspired me to try the same technique of ink on plastic ‘Yupo’ paper, but I wanted to try the same approach in oil.
While there is less to control here, since I’m not trying to mimic any reference, you might think that this is an exercise in freedom and spontaneity, but the truth is that working in this way involves a great deal of restraint, planning, and patience to create marks that look energetic without disrupting the painting. Many pieces of this nature fail, and as a result these types of paintings are a wonderful exercise in letting go of expectations and letting the painting speak to you, rather than trying with all your might to control it.
This is the second oil painting I’ve done in this style, and is perfect for the collector who is open to the narrative that this portrait wants to tell.
Oil on Masonite