Saturday, February 22, 2014


Time for a new 'on my EASEL' painting to be discussed on my blog. This is where I talk about what went into creating a painting.  Basically, it is about how and why I created this featured painting..
'SEARCHING FOR MEANING'   oil on canvas  18x24   (c) Loren Fidalgo 2010 

The painting I am writing about is titled, 'SEARCHING FOR MEANING'.  It is 18x24 and oil on canvas. I really enjoyed creating this piece and I liked the opportunity to dig deep into what goes into the struggle when one is looking for purpose in their life'.  I believe that the seeking and searching may be something that most of us go through some time in our lives. Whether it be addiction to drugs, alcohol, mental illness, emotional loss of a loved one, divorce or trauma or just simple 'existential questioning'.  We may ask ourselves questions... we may tell ourselves what seems to be lies that "we can handle it." With this painting, I am asking, "How do we find the reason? How do we find joy in life, when things are not going our way or we are in pain? How do we find hope?" 

When I began this painting, I had a strong image in my mind about what I wanted to express.  I had the concept in my thoughts about a woman and her struggle to find the reasons for living and why she is here. I wanted to express how it is usually the little things in life that are often missed when one is depressed and feeling like there is no hope. Elements like the flower and butterfly were thought of to  help portray my concept.  I wanted to depict this idea by playing off of a simple phrase that is often said to someone to let them know how they are not valuing the simple things in life.  'Take time to smell the flowers'.  Possibly, people might think that one is not grateful for the little things and they need to take the time to look and see what is right in front of them? For this woman, to smell the flowers is her symbolic way to express her desire to feel what she is missing, the 'joy of life'. She is looking, seeking, hoping and longing. 

 I painted this in a subtle cubist like style and use thick, textured paint. The cubist style helped me to convey the ambivalence that this woman is having in her life.  The woman's eyes are disjointed and each one is looking back out at 'YOU'. This is her way of saying, "I see you, I'm looking at you looking at me and I see that you are wondering what is wrong with me and you are wondering, "why I am 'searching for meaning?" I decided to depict her nude so she is in her most vulnerable and fragile state. The colors I chose are purples, greens, oranges, yellows and reds.  I like the way the colors interact with each other, such as the oranges and greens and purples and yellows.  I used a palette knife to sculpt this entire painting. I stroked the knife on the canvas, moving it in many directions as I carved into the paint. You can see this in the swirls of her hair and the texture in her body.

 In closing about this painting,, the question is inevitably asked, "Does this woman find her meaning?  Well, that is for you to decide.  What do you think?

 I hope you enjoyed the in-depth look into this piece?  If you would like to, please leave a comment or question.  Thanks for reading this post and stay tuned in for the next one.

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