Monday, September 22, 2008

Looking Inward


"Looking Inward" is a large 36 x 48 inches, oil on canvas. It took months to finish. My inspiration for this piece is from something Carl Jung once said, "Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens." And a quote from Gary Parent, "To see your Dream you must stop looking outward at everyone else's Dream, and look inward to see and discover your own Dream."

This painting, "Looking Inward", as well as the post below of "Looking Outward" feel like the culmination of my efforts as an artist to this point in my life. My points of view, looking inward for thoughts and feelings, looking out at the world in longing and awe. Seeing potential. Both paintings include my favorite subject, architecture, and both make use of the figure.

The figure in this piece, "Looking Inward" is an obvious self-portrait. I started with a little sketch of this diner interior, it's "Cindy's" in Eagle Rock, close to where I used to live in Pasadena. But I wanted to include a figure in an interesting way, so I challenged myself to sketch one in the scene. After I doodled the guy outside, looking into the brilliantly lit diner through the window, I felt it had a symbolic dream like quality, so I thought it would be a great opportunity to do a self portrait. Lately, I have been developing an interest in psychology, read allot on dreams, the writings of Carl Jung, as well as Victor Frankel's "Man's Search For Meaning". And I believe that the greatest thing an artwork can do is to develop and carry some personal meaning for my life, and pass some on to the viewer, to discover significant meaning in his or her own life as well.

29 comments:

Alexandre Jay said...

Love it! In particular the illumination of the benches and floor is really awesome. A very unique piece of art indeed.

VanDerHoekArt said...

This is my favorite painting of yours to date Tony! I love everything about it, the skillful execution, composition and best of all, the meaning behind it. It's fantastic!

That was quite and adventure you and William Wray had photographing LA at night. I hope you brought home loads of inspirational pictures.

David Lobenberg said...

Bravo. Great non-specific. subject- to -interpretation emotion here and very well executed in terms of color, form, and light.

william wray said...

this is a great one Tony, I'd like to see you do more intimate work like this, not only in persoanl expression, but in scale. Great lighting and contrast, good rich colors. Bravo!

Jesse said...

Its kind of like some strange doppelganger to Hopper's Nighthawks. Intensely bright, looking from the inside out, but equally sparse and lonesome.

ericmerrell said...

Cheers - I agree, Victor Frankl has a lot of great stuff to say. The psychology of the painting comes across nicely. I really like the humanity of it. Eric

tonypetersart said...

Hey Alexandre,

Thanks for such a positive response, glad you like it!

tonypetersart said...

Hi Vanderhoekart,

I really poured allot of myself into these two new paintings, thanks for your positive feedback.

William Wray and I are always out with our cameras or paint boxes looking for inspiration, I'm already working on a big new painting from our last photo-safari.

tonypetersart said...

Hey David,

Thanks for your email, I appreciate it!

tonypetersart said...

Bill,

Thanks! My hope and wish is that every painting could be so richly inspired, I think that these two pieces will act as a springboard to my future work. Unfortunately I can't just throw together large scale paintings, so it'll take some patience.

tonypetersart said...

Jesse,

I flew out to Chicago for the Edward Hopper retrospective back in April, saw a TON of his paintings over a period of two days. It was definitely motivating!

tonypetersart said...

Hey Eric,

Your new work is looking really cool too! I'm jealous that you got to go paint Monhegan Island!

David Lobenberg said...

I'm fed up going to W. Wray's blog (a great painter) to get to yours, so I got you on my blog roll. You maybe slow, but you paint exceedingly fine.

tonypetersart said...

Much appreciated, David!

Brothergrimm said...

I love the smooth texture! This makes me want to stop in for a burger and a shake, maybe a little pie & coffee?

tonypetersart said...

Thanks BG, I like the smooth texture too. I'm often conflicted with going thick and painterly or with a smooth surface on a painting... which is better? Thick paint lends itself better to lost and found edges, where as the smooth approach makes for a nice polished and clean finish.

Kellie Hill said...

I really think you've captured the symbolic dream feeling here, it's wonderful :) and I have to admire that you can work on something for months- that's a lot of dedication, but the end result is awesome!

tonypetersart said...

Hi Kellie,

I work on several paintings at a time, so things don't get too monotonous looking at a single piece every day. I like keeping a long term project around the studio at all times. Some paintings (particularly smaller ones) just come together quickly, while the biggest and best ideas deserve a larger scale with more allotted time. Glad you like it!

onpainting said...

Me likey your style Tony. Nice work. David directed me here because he thought I would be able to relate to this post. Nice direction David.

tonypetersart said...

Hi onepainting,

I appreciate your comment, glad you like my work, hope to see you back here again!

marko said...

To paraphrase a line: Mr.Peters has left the building - and entered the golden halls of truly fine and inspiring art.With the stride of true master I might add.

This magnificent orchestration of imagery and emotion is clearly the work of a man who has stood by his goals and never left his eye stray from the course. Bravo to you Mr. Peters, Bravo!!!

tonypetersart said...

Wow, Mark, that's quite a compliment! I'll have to put a check in the mail to you for that one :-)

Anonymous said...

Just two words to describe this piece. Absolutely amazing!

Ambera said...

This painting, paired with an amazing source of inspiration is quite powerful. I love your take on it, the description, and it's brilliantly painted. Thanks for sharing!

tonypetersart said...

Hey Anonymous,

Glad you like it! I't a pleasure having you on my blog.

tonypetersart said...

Ambera,

Much appreciated, I'm grateful for such a warm and overall positive response to this particular painting. It's really encouraging. Thanks!

alex schaefer said...

Beautiful piece! great composition, color, and feeling for light! The Vincent in me wants to flip your quote and say "Who looks outside, awakens! Who looks inside, dreams."

tonypetersart said...

Thanks Alex! Yeah, that is part of the irony of Jung's quote.

Andrew said...

That's really amazing...

Thank you..
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Andrew
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