Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Converse with the cosmos...

converse with the cosmos+surreal art+sneakers in space+Nicola McLean

First things first, yesterday was my 6th blogaversary. I only remembered thanks to Facebook and its memory prompts because I'd mentioned it last year on my 5th blogaversary. This is the 434th time I've posted to my blog which over the last six years has changed from PointyPix to NicseARTh and now to Art by Nicola McLean which it will remain. Over those years, I've moved from stippled ink to watercolours to acrylic and gouache and extended my choice of subject matter from pet portraits and animal art to include landscapes and still life using pointillism, realism, impressionism, expressionism, abstraction and surrealism! I'm so glad that I started blogging as it has definitely helped to motivate me to keep painting and to keep trying new things and, if nothing else, it's a great way to look back and see how far my art has evolved - I don't think anyone can accuse me of finding my niche and just sticking to it!

converse with the cosmos+surreal art+acrylic painting+sneakers+Nicola McLean

Now, when it comes to humour, I'm a huge fan of observational comedians, like Dara O'Briain, for example.  I'm really not a fan of one liner pun style humour like that of Milton Jones. I mean, it could be argued that it's clever word play but it just doesn't make me laugh the way a brilliantly told anecdote can. That said, I am fond of pun-type word play when it comes to the titles of my paintings because I like that it can be interpreted in more than one way (just not in the double entendre 'oh er missus' style of the Carry On films of the 60s and 70s!) 

converse with the cosmos+sneakers+surrealism+acrylic painting+Nicola McLean

Anyway, an example of what I mean is the title of my latest painting. Sometimes, I know instantly what I want to call a painting (Like with 'On thin ice' for the polar bear which worked literally and as a reference to how endangered they are.) Other times, I'll mull it over as I'm working on the painting and usually something will occur to me by the time it's finished (or else I'll find an appropriate song lyric). 

converse with the cosmos+sneaker+trainers+space+surreal art+Nicola McLean

For this one, I'd had the idea to paint a pair of sneakers for my space junk series and was taking photos of a pair I had (which weren't Converse) when it occurred to me that if I used actual Converse sneakers then I could call the painting 'Converse with the cosmos' (as opposed to 'Sneakers in space'!)and it would, indeed, work on more than one level especially given so many of my art ideas pop into my head during meditations (which is when I do converse with the cosmos!). (I spend way too much time alone in my own head, clearly).

converse with the cosmos+sneaker+trainers+space+surreal art+Nicola McLean

So, knowing my sister has several pairs of Converse, while I was in London with her last month, I took a heap of photos of her pink pair and then floated them off into the cosmos.

converse with the cosmos+sneaker+trainers+space+surreal art+Nicola McLean

In other news, I've been invited to take part in a local event at the end of July called Caithness Creative Festival which takes place over two days. So, I'm just trying to decide which paintings to put into that. 

surrealism+converse with the cosmos+surreal art+polar bear+on thin ice+Nicola McLean

I'm not sure whether to play it safe with landscapes because folk up here do seem to like landscapes, or dare to be different with my space junk paintings because so many other artists up here also do landscapes. Maybe I'll mix and match!

art shed+art studio+recycled pallets+Nicola McLean

At the weekend we ventured out in Campy McCampervan and I was delighted to stumble across art most unexpectedly in the absolute middle of nowhere! We went for a walk along a dirt path by a little tumbledown cottage and found these very unexpected (and rather strange but really well executed) works of art!

Just to put into context how remote this little ruin actually is! 

Clearly a dedicated graffiti artist who travels everywhere with their spray paints because you just never know when you'll find a wall in the middle of nowhere that could become a work of art!


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