The Monet connection
The work of Claude Monet needs no introduction – especially that of his series of paintings referred to as Water Lilies. It was a collection of over 250 individual works created by Monet during his later years whilst suffering from cataracts.
There aren’t many painters that reach me on a profound level and even less so the figurative ones but for some reason Monet’s Water Lilies does. And this is coming from an artist who doesn’t use much green in his work!
So it may come as something of a surprise to learn that I have not only created a mainly green painting, but also one as large and imposing as this.
I wanted to bring my own interpretation to Monet’s great body of work to a canvas and choosing to go big was partly due to Monet’s own large scale studies. His artworks are the basis for the fusion with my own unique styles and application methods. The material selection is bewildering and has helped create a truly unique finish and texture. More on that below.
Using real malachite stone
One of the standout successes of this painting is the use of malachite. If you’re not familiar with this semi-precious stone (actually it’s classified as a mineral); it is green in colour because it is actually copper carbonate hydroxide at its heart.
It has been used as a paint pigment but is now often found in expensive furniture, decorative urns and as single polished stones.
In this painting I got hold of some real nice pieces of mined stone and got it crushed into a very fine powder. This was then added to a clear resin pigment and applied to the canvas in layers and waves. So the painting can carry the claim of having real malachite stone on it! Very cool.
Fusing new materials together
In addition to the inclusion of malachite is the use of a new formula base resin. This is the main component of my enamel paint but has been isolated and slightly reformulated for this painting only as I needed a slightly more robust compound to hold everything together.
Normally I have the addition of driers and pigment to help the paints keep stable; but when the resin exists on its own I need to change it slightly so that it does the job of all the other components. I used the resin to mix the malachite with so that I could get it onto the painting.
I have also used some very special pigments too. These are the dark green areas you can see. I got hold of a very rare colour green that isn’t commercially available. It is actually part of another paint system but with some clever chemistry it has been isolated out into this utterly magnificent hue. And for a green-hater like me that’s really saying something!
The double skin
As you might expect with a painting that has around 15 layers of paint and stone on it – it weighs quite a lot! I had to stretch a giant piece of blank canvas over it first before the painting was stretched.
This is primarily to support the weight of the finished painting and stop it from sagging. The initial bank canvas acts as a support for it.
Living with the painting
You’ll need a pot of cash and a big wall to begin with, but furthermore the primary consideration should be how it moves you. There is, for me, an instant connection with the outdoors when I look at it. So I could easily see this in a large reception room next to some bifold doors or a big open garden.
Its deep, rich colours and insane textures are the perfect mirror for what goes on outside. So if your basement living space needs a focal point or our freshly extended kitchen/dining room needs something you can fall into on a lazy summer day then need to call me today.