Flowers being my main passion in my art and I'm always curious to learn, I've been in search of historical motivations as well as psychological benefits of flower art in particular.
Scientist David Deutsch, believes that blooms have an abject beauty that draws people in with their harmonizing hues, smooth curves, and symmetrical patterns. Harmonizing hues.... has me think of energy regulation. Of calming the nerves of those who have had a busy day filled with traffic and distractions. Symmetrical patterns makes reference to balance and order.
There is another aspect of creating art that I have been exploring and that is the golden ratio or fibonacci numbers. Do you know what those are? Let me explain. The golden ratio is a mathematical relationship between two lengths the ideal being 1.618. This is the probably the most studied ratio since the beginning of time.
The ancient Greeks recognized this “dividing” or “sectioning” property, a phrase that was ultimately shortened to simply “the section.” It was more than 2,000 years later that both “ratio” and “section” were designated as “golden” by German mathematician Martin Ohm in 1835. The Greeks also had observed that the golden ratio provided the most aesthetically pleasing proportion of sides of a rectangle, a notion that was enhanced during the Renaissance by, for example, the work of the Italian polymath Leonardo da Vinci and the publication of De divina proportione (1509; Divine Proportion), written by the Italian mathematician Luca Pacioli and illustrated by Leonardo. Taken from https://www.britannica.com/science/golden-ratio
So what does this mean for art? If the greeks were using the golden ratio to design the most pleasing relationship of the lines and proportions that created their monuments and Leonardo used his understanding of the ratio in his historic work, then it leads me to believe that it may still be relevant today. (hint of sarcasm.)
How does the golden ratio relate to me and my work? As an artist I have the challenge of creating a window to the world, as I see it, with the hopes of drawing the attention of a viewer and perhaps a collector for my work. I have two dimensional surface to work on and what I choose to place in that frame, where I place it, how I depict it, the skill I'm able to create it with all determine the success of the piece.
I could willy nilly place things in the frame and hope for the best, but considering some of paintings take 75-100 hours to create I'd rather not take the chance. I'm not really much of a gambler when it comes to my work.
What I do instead is I compose my subjects in a way that honours the golden ratio, captures light in an interesting way, and hopefully pulls the view in.
Here is a peony that I photographed. At this point I'm not sure if it will be an interesting painting. As it is in this image, I would not paint this because I don't want all the grass/dirt and extraneous information that really is not that interesting. The challenge now becomes whether I can compose this image in a pleasing way to make it an exquisite painting.
This combination is okay. But let's see if I can refine this even a bit more.
Now we've got something. Let me explain. Maybe you aren't seeing what I'm seeing. I've placed the golden ratio, the lines dividing the shape into the 1.618 ratio. I've placed one cross section on the stamen of the flower and the other points on petals of interest. This creates a framing for the focal point. The stamen being what I really want to draw you in with. I feel a sense of tension here, like you can feel the energy of the bloom pushing out from the frame of the canvas. I find this really interesting.
I want to generate a feeling with my work. Yes, it is a pretty picture, but what I can do with that image to have you feel something? That's the big question. It begins with me, what do I feel? It's my hope that the feeling will transfer to you the viewer.
I'd like to think that I create paintings that will enhance your life, provide a calm centering energy in your home. Using the tools at my disposal, from ancient mathematical understanding, to the conventions of modern oil paint, I hope I'm successful. It is my passion and intend to keep practicing and finding a way to connect with you in a meaningful way.
To see my collection of finished pieced, you can view them here.