I had a lot of fun working on this piece. For a long time I had been contemplating basing some of my bark series paintings on Birch trees. Their trunks are very interesting to look at. They have pieces of bark that peel off and continue to hang on to the trunk. The trunk is a reddish hue, the bark a beautiful pale brown, and the underside of the bark is a pale yellow. This juxtaposition of the red of the exposed trunk with the pale colours of the pieces of bark creates a brilliance that arrests the eye. Also, the bark is textured while the exposed trunk is smooth – this contrast also makes for an interesting subject. Considering the “peeled off” nature of these lovely trees, I decided on collage as the best medium for this artwork.
The Materials and Technique
I used two 11 X 15 (inches) cold pressed heavy paper for this work. I cut one of them in four, painted two of those pieces brown, and the other two a combination of warm colours that I have observed on birches. I did not use a reference photograph – I just wanted to be spontaneous in my choice of colours. After the paint (watercolour and acrylic) dried, I cut these pieces into further bits to resemble the bark pieces. The paper, when torn, exposed its weave – this inadvertently enhanced the textural effect I wanted to create.
Next, I painted the other uncut 11 X 15 paper a pinkish red (the exposed trunk) with horizontal brush strokes. Following this, I tried out different arrangements of the cut up pieces over this paper until I was satisfied with the overall effect. I then glued the pieces taking care to leave parts of the paper unglued to look like peeled off barks.
The work, as I said, made me very happy. It was an added bonus to find that it suited a frame that had been lying around a couple of years!
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Posted by arvindh at Sunday, June 11, 2006