Portland State College. Department of Art
Date of Publication
Master of Science in Teaching (M.S.T.) in Art
1 online resource (3, ii, 18 leaves)
In working with paintings dealing with the interpretation of landscape in oil paint and mixed media during the past year, I have seen new possibilities. This is true both of my approach to landscape painting and of the handling of the painting materials. These studies have led me to a freer handling of paint. In addition, they have led me to be able to make a more universal statement concerning landscape itself rather than only a visual representation of one particular landscape. The first indication that a universal statement about landscape could be achieved became apparent to me while I was working with mixed media. The natural action of one medium upon the other very often suggests landscape forms which the artist can clarify into a statement about landscape. Using the paint itself to develop a motif enables one to deal more directly with ideas about landscape, concepts of color, and spatial perspective than with the illusion of a particular place. It is such experimentation as this that led me toward what I believe to be a universal statement about landscape. Another discovery I made in doing the series was that oil paint could be handled in much the same manner as mixed media. However, it is the action of one oil color upon another while in a liquid state that becomes the means of suggesting forms. It is the rhythmic movement of these forms and colors that reflects the constant changing and movement of nature. To me this is the essence of the natural landscape and that which brings life to it. In this series of paintings the subjective analysis of nature inevitably dropped the objective details of the real landscape. One’s attention begins to be centered on the effects of the total landscape – effects of color changes, rhythm and movement, form relationships, spatial relationships, and atmospheric effects, events that are to be found in nature itself. My major consideration in doing this series of paintings was that of color in which I had to decide which colors would best suit the total impression I sought and express plastic space as well. A major discovery for me was that of the difference between wash painting and brush painting. In brush painting ideas are somewhat changed as work progresses, but, generally, each brush stroke and each color is calculated from the beginning to produce a desired effect. In wash painting much of the work on the canvas is the result of searching by the artist in the work itself as the paint develops natural forms on the canvas. It is at this point that he takes over with the brush and fully capitalized on the developing forms. I believe that color plays a major role in involving the viewer emotionally and intellectually in a painting. It seems to me that part of the role of the artist is to deliver messages that can invite others, in some way, to share his feeling about the nature of things. For this reason he must seek a statement that will have a universal expression so that he may communicate with others. This I have tried to do.
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Olson, Eugene Neal, "A series of landscape studies in oil painting and other media exploring and interpreting natural landscape elelments with emphasis on the relationship between plastic space and visual space" (1966). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 318.