While working on multiple pieces of different sizes simultaneously, I tend to approach them as one large painting or a sort of portable mural. Dissected in various areas and each canvas varying in composition, yet maintaining the color scheme and rhythm of the entire “collection”.
Because of my background as a muralist, the larger the canvas the better for me, it is effortless to paint it since my entire body is conditioned to move and dance with the large painting process. The smaller the canvas, my being in stillness increases 95%. Because all I am using at that time is my wrist and a little bit of my arm, that’s it.
With my latest collection titled “Spiritual Equinox” I noticed that I would keep leaving the smaller pieces (14”X14”) behind. I would add some broad layers of paint to them then move on to the larger pieces, where I would invest a lot of time and energy onto them.
One smaller piece in particular felt very distant to the rest. So, one day, I decided to focus on it and not stop painting on it till I reached a moment of satisfaction. Hours later I surrendered and began to literally draw on the painting. It was now really offbeat from the rest of the paintings but I allowed myself to create freely. Then I heard a voice, it was my father’s voice, he said, “Feel the line, don’t just draw it mechanically. Feel it, let the line tremble and waver – at least you can feel it being created.”
I would go as far as to say that my father’s spirit began to guide me. At-least that’s how I felt at first but then the entire experience deepened. It was like I was outside of my body seeing my father creating/painting the piece. As he spoke out loud words of encouragement and guidance I observed attentively.
Then, with a blink of an eye, I was back to being myself and rinsing out the brushes with turpenoid medium as I stared at the painting. I grabbed it and took it home with me. I figured I would do that to further observe it as I dosed off to sleep. Then upon waking up, I would stare at it again and decide my next step in the painting process. That was my initial thought but once I brought it home, my 4-year-old daughter, Galaxy saw the piece and ran straight to me thanking me for her gift. She embraced me while taking the painting from my hands. I figured she would get over it and forget about the painting.
The next day, as I observed the painting in the living room, Galaxy picked it up and asked me to follow her into her room. She then indicated exactly where she wanted the piece to hang, right above her princess sofa-chair. Her joy and excitement made it hard for me to explain that the piece was not complete and that my intention was to sell it at a fundraiser for Greely Gardens not gift it to her. At that moment when I was about to explain this to her, she thanked me again and embraced me with a surplus of gratitude. Galaxy had seen all of my other paintings from the “Spiritual Equinox” collection but this was the only piece that she connected with at such a deep level. I looked at Irene and with a big smile on my face I said, “I just bought our daughter her first art piece.”