I’ve already reviewed some of Lynn Krawczyk’s book Intentional Printing. Being creatively handicapped with a broken shoulder, I’m at least and at last able to devote more time to studying in greater depth my constantly expanding collection of how-to mixed media books. These and listed – with links to Amazon UK for easy purchase – on my page Recommended Books for Mixed Media Artists.
I’ve been reflecting on Chapter One of Intentional Printing: Exploring Intentional Printing, particularly the section dealing with colour. Lynn writes:
“It’s important to spend … time thinking about how color makes you feel.”
Lynn’s asking artists to introspect on their favourite colours. I did, fairly sure I knew the whys and wherefores of mine, but I was surprised. What came to mind were not the jewel-like colours of Les Tres Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, Fra Angelico at San Marco, the faded reds and ochres of the crumbling wall paintings in medieval Danish churches.
What came to mind was white.
White’s not even a colour. I like white, or I should say, different whites in combination. And pondering this, it’s about the point where the invisible is just becoming visible – becoming and emergence. A combination of whites in tone and texture is an acknowledgement of reality as palimpsest, layered worlds, landscape; and existence as unlimited, eternal. It’s about the open road that constantly beckons.
And I just saw, in my contemplation of colour, how it is not coincidence that I just slid down the slope of a white cliff face and broke my shoulder, fossil hunting!
White is also the tabula rasa, the blank sheet, page, field we are born to, on which we make our marks as we pass through the world. From Wikipedia:
“Tabula rasa means “blank slate” in Latin and originates from the Roman tabula or wax tablet used for notes, which was blanked by heating the wax and then smoothing it, to give a tabula rasa. This equates to the English term, “blank slate” (or more literally, “scraped tablet”) that refers to writing on a slate sheet in chalk. Both may be refreshed repeatedly, by melting of the wax or by erasing the chalk.”
Chalk and wax.
The whitish nature of wax fixes becoming and emergence so they can’t slip away. It is a medium whose transparency can reveal and stop something in time and space. Encaustic wax is made by melting down and combining damar resin and beeswax. These are organic, from nature, the one from trees, the other from bees. Bees and trees, working together to make the invisible, visible.
Waxen whites are also for me the equivalent of silent listening.
I’m going to daydream about all my favourite colours to see what they make me feel. I see how this will make me use colour with greater consciousness, awareness and control.
What do your favourite colours make you feel?