Sunday, May 21, 2023

Man Kneeling 2016

 Automatic writing, also called psychography, is a claimed psychic ability allowing a person to produce written words without consciously writing. Practitioners engage in automatic writing by holding a writing instrument and allowing alleged spirits to manipulate the practitioner's hand. The instrument may be a standard writing instrument, or it may be one specially designed for automatic writing, such as a planchette or a ouija board. *Wikipedia

Although I didn't use an ouija board, I like to think of this style of painting as "Autonomic".  I start by covering the entire surface of a panel with acrylic paint. Then, while the paint is wet, after having dipped my bush into black India ink, I start a line drawing.  The process demands that I begin with an  empty mind(never an easy accomplishment) since I don't know what the drawing is to be until the lines start to reveal themselves.  If I make an error, or don't like a particular part of the drawing, then I have to start over, repainting the entire background over the wet ink lines.The process is both physically and emotionally taxing.  The paint dries quickly, so I have a small window of time to work in, and if any part of the drawing doesn't work I have to, essentially, begin again with only a faint idea of what came before--all this with an empty mind!  There is no erasing or correcting  because any added lines or erasures after it dries change the entire surface of the painting. But, the smudges and smears of the first, second, or third drawings make the surface that much richer and juicier even as I bemoan the loss of the drawing as I cover it over with new paint.