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.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Looking Outward

This is a large painting, 32 x 48 inches, and probably one of my favorites I've painted yet. I'm calling it "Looking Outward". One of two large new paintings of mine, both inspired by a quote by the famous psychologist and author, Carl Jung... "Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens."

The setting is a building facade in downtown Los Angeles. When I first saw it, I imagined that it might be the old Chouinard art school's building on 3rd Street, the school that eventually became Art Center where I attended college. But this was just an assumption due to the bas-relief sculpture and decorative elements seen on the beautiful old building, on closer examination they're obviously symbolic representations of history, education, and the arts.

I found it to be an ironic scene that this beautiful old building, appearing to have once been erected to somehow glorify the arts, was now a textile manufacturing plant in the garment district... some people might refer to it as a "sweat shop". The worker looking out the window is a kind of psychological self portrait. As I worked on the piece, it became evident that the image was full of alot of personal meaning to me, this will be one of those paintings that I'll especially hate to part with.