"Sunspot" was inspired by the energy of the sun itself. I saw some fantastic photos of the surface of the sun at the Griffith Park Observatory last spring, and my Energy Series was born. I was intrigued by the textures, variations in color and depth, and movement on the surface of the sun. This piece was created from my memories of the photos and a few simple line sketches. When I sketch quickly to remember something I see, I make notes: five shades of yellow from lemon to cadmium yellow dark, turquoise, alizarin, cad red lt, and so on. I sketch my little pictures and color notes in my small black wirebound sketchbook which is always with me.
When I began painting in earnest and was learning to mix color, I found it important to write down my recipes for the colors I was mixing. I make notes in my color mixing sketchbooks, which are just for that purpose and live on my work table next to my brushes. A swatch of the color, with quick notes of which pigments from which brands has saved me enormous amounts of time and trouble, especially when I am commissioned to paint something similar to what I've done. I often see the complete palette of the painting I want to make, and a quick referral to my color books helps me get started immediately. I also have several color mixing books for artists, and sometimes use the recipes in there to practice mixing colors I don't often use. Last year, I decided to make friends with green, with great results. I had been afraid of green, kinda, and needed to get more comfortable with it. Now I have pages of notes on green.
Sometimes, when I'm feeling a bit blocked or stuck, I refer to my color sketchbooks for inspiration. Just looking at pages and pages of delicious colors can get me kick started when resistance has taken hold. And it's all about color! Color is my chosen method of expression. What I paint always begins with an idea of color. A red abstract, a blue heart, a green sky, a gold flower. Color talks, shouts, sings and skips. It dances, meditates, flows, heals, emotes. I am highly distracted by bright colorful objects.
On an energy level, color is one way that clairvoyants see. Energy itself can be seen as color, and color can be used to create healing.
Currently, I am enamored of magenta, red, orange, bright olive green, and rich purple. What colors do you find yourself attracted to?
"Sunspot" 2007 26"x20" acrylic on vinyl in reverse available at kriscahill.com