Celebrating black and white
Polaris is a complex painting created with just two simple colours – black and white. That’s it, no magic formulas or secret tones – just good old black and white.
Stop and think about that for a moment as you scroll through the images on this page. I created all these dramatic nuances of tone with a blend of just black and white. No grey, no silver and no chemical wizardry.
Every twist and turn has been manipulated by me to produce some truly profound finishes. It is perfect in every way and has a very real impact upon you as you stand in front of it.
The paint has a lot to do with how this painting turned out because I was using a brand-new version of my enamels. In fact, this variation is highly flammable and extremely toxic. It has its roots in a type of coating that dries very, very quickly so I have to work fast with things like the base coat.
It’s also very sticky and thick which means it has a short pot life. The thicker something is, the less time I have to work with it. So the challenges are very real – time being a critical one.
So imagine how fast I need to work with each layer and strand of paint if I am to blend it with a neighbour? This painting, let me tell you, is a triumphant moment that only I can really measure. Trust me, this will impact every painting from now on.
One of the most impressive things about how this paint works is its ability to form clear, separate boundaries with paint applied next to it. We don’t get natural movement or flows like previous versions, instead we get a paint that sits on the canvas right where you put it. That’s great for creating stark and contrasting effects but a total pain in the ass if you’re trying to blend paint together.
The truth is out there
See my point now? This is a shit to work with, but I can adapt to do some incredible things with it. That’s where my experience and skill really comes in and that’s what you’re paying for at the heart of it.
A painting borne from the years of graft and failure that has shaped a life and brought me to this point in time. My whole career is right there to be seen if you choose to look for long enough and let these words sink in.
To be able to manipulate a substance to do this with it is nothing short of miraculous. I don’t say that as some ignorant boast – it is meant to come from fact. Fourteen years of practice let’s me stay on top of my craft and my technical abilities. That’s just how it is. I can then go off, develop a wholly different paint and then do this at the first attempt.
Think what the next few years will do for me if I keep going forward like this…