This is an early work from around 1982. While at Art College our painting class and a few lecturers went to Binna Burra for a weekend camp. Binna Burra is on a mountain range in Queensland, close to the border of New South Wales. It's a National Park with many long walks through dense and beautiful rainforest.
Recently, an artist told me, "I just paint what I see".
Well, I have always had problems with painting what I see. Even as a kid in primary school I wanted to draw what I think. If I ever draw what I see, meaning a more realistic representation, then I still want what I see, to be in service to what I think. In fact I don't think anyone really draws just what they see. Even photography is an edited, frozen snapshot taken from a point of view. As people become more exposed to a form of Art like music or painting they learn to see more and understand the artists vision. Those who are rather naive about painting seem to respond with praise to more realistic works. This is in some way an adopted position, picked up from schooling or some other social conditioning. I have noticed that children at a certain age seem to freely respond to less realistic works. But many adults have lost this ability.
Anyway, this drawing represents the branches and bush stylized and felt. I thought at the time that I would run as fast as I could from the maddening crowd that just wanted to paint what they saw. But, I much admire those artists who can render a scene, still life or figure with great accuracy, gusto and meaning.
Three score and ten is not enough time for an artist.
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