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Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Studio progress; painting on photos

For my latest uni project I'm look at how I use photographs to base my paintings on, so I decided to cut out the middle man and just paint directly on photographs. I picked out a few photos from a camping trip in 2003 which were developed from film from a disposable camera.

I used acrylic paint so that it would stick to the prints and dry. I painted people into the scenes based on photographs of other times I've been camping, which brings more life into the otherwise empty image.

I also painted over the sky because in the photos it was just white, so I made it more appealing by making it blue with white clouds. 

Painting on to photographs is nothing new; German artist Gerhard Richter has produced over 500 overpainted photographs.
He used reprints of personal photos and smeared the left over paint from that days work across the photo in a spontaneous gesture using a palette knife. Those he judged as unsuccessful were destroyed immediately.

The result is a contrast between the natural tones of the photo and the bright colours of the paint, the photo's smooth surface and the textured paint on top.

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