A Fresh Approach

It started with a tree. Something about the texture of the bark appealed to me, so I took a picture.

Then I examined the image on my computer, and pondered what the image was saying to me. Did it need altering? Was it worth keeping?

Every time I looked at it, I was drawn to a small, cartoonish face just off center. I decided to sketch that face, and work outwards from there.

The image moved left and right of the face, but I felt compelled to set the two halves of the photo on top of one another, so the sketch no longer resembled the original.

Then, using a fine brush, I traced all of my pencil marks with dark paint. Noting that the bark was not one colour, I then added a second shade. When all of that dried, I wet the paper and blotted in two more colours, let the water work its will.

I repeated the steps again for more vibrancy.

The Storyteller, by V.J. Knutson

What emerged was this old tree, with the profile of an ancient, and so I’ve titled the piece “Storyteller”.

This is a new approach to art for me, but I am so excited about the process that I’m working on a similar one based on a rock formation.

What do you see in the old tree trunk?

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Permission to write, paint, and imagine are the gifts I gave myself when chronic illness hit - a fair exchange: being for doing. Relevance is an attitude. Humour essential.

14 thoughts on “A Fresh Approach

  1. I see the profile of a wise man chewing on a twig, looking downward, considering how to respond to my questions … He is tattooed/scarred from his years of wisdom-gathering, and in those marks are other faces – eagle. wolf, bear, fish – plus a butterfly representing transformation.
    Beautiful work!!

    Liked by 2 people

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