It was a short week, with Tuesday a holiday and Monday therefore a bridge day, but I'm still glad it's Friday. The past two, three weeks have been a bit emotional (was it something in the air? the stars?), and this week's theme for the Artist's Play Room Challenge "Light & Dark" seemed as fitting as last week's "Rainbow" theme had been. Where there's light, there's shadow, and when everything seems dark, there'll be a light lighting up the shadows somewhere again. There's always both, has to be, as if there was only one of them left, something would definitely be very seriously wrong.
I was quit busy over my prolonged weekend, adding two more pages made of recycled book covers to my Dreams & Wishes Journal for 2012, working some more on the background of my green canvas, but most of all working in my art journal, playing with the light & dark theme. I didn't much think about which colours to choose. Of course there had to be light (Titanium White) and dark (Payne's Grey), but I found myself reaching automatically for the earth tones for my palette.
The Siennas and Umbras (for the portrait I used only Raw and Burnt Umbra) have such a calming, balancing, grounding effect, I think. Close your eyes, and you can just feel the warm Tuscany wind on your face, your feet firmly on the ground, closely connection with the earth, the brown and red and yellow earth between your toes.
I came home late on Wednesday, after my Swedish class, but managed to catch the last 15 minutes of a programme on telly about colour. They talked about the natural pigments, the earth tones of Italy and France, and showed a place in the Provence, in Roussillon, which was dedicated to preserving the old earth colours, most of all the French Ochre (which in Italy is called Sienna or Siena, after the Tuscan city of Siena). The place, the Conservatoire des ocres et de la couleur, also holds workshops about these colours, and how to make them yourself. It all sounded so fascinating, and I'd really love to take such a workshop. It sounds so inspiring! I have to take a closer look at their website, but as I understood so far, the courses are all in French only, and I'm afraid my French is definitely not up to such a specialised course.
But it made me think of exploring these earth colours a bit more, and maybe doing a series of paintings with them, and experimenting a bit. Well, we'll see. I definitely enjoyed painting my earthy portrait.
The more I look at the portrait, the more I like her (despite of all the things and proportions that are wrong). She seems to have that calm and content look on her face I've been lacking for quite some time. And I could swear she winked at me while I wrote this post. "You'll see, things will be all right. Everything will be fine", she seems to be saying. Well, I hope she's right.
I've been a terrible contact this past week. I linked up a post to Paint Party Friday last week, but never really got round to visiting and commenting on the other participants entries. Which is really a shame, as it is such a wonderful, lively and inspiring place. I meant to catch up during the week, but somehow, I had so many things on my mind. It would have been better not link up at all. But I promise to do better this week!
Have a wonderful Friday everyone!