Artists ApproachThe brushes and my hands have to do the job, not me, not my brain, that does not work ..
I paint… it makes me happy!
I am motivated by the love of the process. Painting is like an intense compulsion for me. Read about my Artists Approach:
Artists Approach Painting Abstract
Every time I start a new painting, I am thrilled and in total panic at the same time. I think every artist whom you would ask about his Artists Approach knows that feeling. Even though it is not easy to endure: It is a wonderful feeling! This panic however creates chaos in my head.
When I start with a new abstract work
I usually begin with random brush strokes of color, and then paint unpredictably and intuitively. I always try to work in the direction that the painting gives me. Sometimes I paint on the rhythm of music. Often it is an experiment with different methods wich I have seen somewhere and would like to try myself. I always feel that I take great risks, but I then reassure myself every time with words such as: “It’s just paint, you can always throw the painting away, or you can also paint over it again.” Then the panic decreases and I can think again:
“What would happen if … “.
Sometimes it appears that the painting already knows what it wants to be. Then all I have to do is to surrender, to look and above all to rely on my brushes, which then just do the job, because they know what to do.
Painting every day is a must for me and also very useful, because you get better. You can predict what will happen when you make certain brush strokes again and again. You know how much water or medium you should have on your brush etc, then you can achieve more with less effort. So you grow and get more confidence in yourself, but that is not the only thing.
Artists Approach Painting a City
When I start painting a town, I’m just as thrilled and at the same time in complete panic as with an abstract painting. That feeling is the same every time. It is a wonderful feeling, but again it creates chaos in my head.
I try to create order in this chaos
by drawing smooth lines and by bringing harmony into the bright colors, but the tension in the painting must remain. I do that by interrupting the smooth lines here and there. They must be round, curved lines and a single straight line can bring some tension to it. Mostly the first drawing is a doodle like a child’s scratch. Adding lights and shades creates roofs, walls or floors. At first sight there is harmony, but the chaos persists, because it is not always clear what for instance is the roof and what the wall. Still, I want it to look like if you could build a town like that.
Furthermore, the colors shouldn’t be pastel and they should not be floating. A pastel-colored world does not exist, because the world is not only nice and sweet. I love deep and full colors. You can not achieve this effect by putting the right color in one go, but only by creating a new layer over it each time again. It looks like a beautiful, brightly colored city. But when you take a close view, you’ll see that it is impossible to build a world like this.
Usually the towns are in the dark. There are no people on the streets and the moon is shining, so in every painting you’ll see that light of the moon shining on the city. It reflects the mood of the city an often this mood determines the title of the painting.
Silence on a Sunday Morning
As I painted this work, I was thinking of the book my mother used to read from as I was a child. I then saw the story come to life in beautiful colors. During painting, it was as if the houses were looking at me. I felt the silence of the Sunday morning as all the people were still sleeping an where the moon was still shining. Nobody is awake or has to go to work, because Sunday is a special day...
Urbe in Orbem
A chaotic colourful water surface mirrors in a water drop and in that drop a city is created with clear lines and harmonious color distribution. A second drop jumps out of the water in the background as if it is a little child of the big water drop.
Water has an appeal to me. When I see water, for example a ditch or a river, I would prefer to bathe in it or at least paddle. The exciting thing about water is that it can reflect all kinds of beautiful things, as if you could take it, but it is not there, because it is not real.
In most of my paintings, water flows through the city. In this work the city is born from the water.
You are not alone
A city full of colourful houses standing in the water. The light is shining in a few houses, in a way that I didn’t feel comfortable. It was as if some people were watching me an therefore the working title was ‘You are being watched’. The water did not make it any better, so that threatening feeling became bigger. Then there was this bridge that leads you to the town and invites you to enter. I felt no longer watched, but a part of the group and I could belong to them. When I realized this, I felt consoled by this painting.
Max van Huut (one of the architects from “De Buitenplaats” in Eelde, The Netherlands): “…it is as if we lift a piece of earth and turn it into a building. Everything we put down comes from that earth and becomes part of it again. We see the earth as a living organism, which you must not mutilate with unnatural buildings. You have to add something to it. Something that makes the earth feel good.” (translated by Lia van Elffenbrinck)
I love buildings that form a unity with the environment so this “Metamorphosis” came naturally from the ground with all its bumps. This also reflects the importance of balance and harmony.