I’ve always struggled with painting landscape. But here are some things that make it easier:
- Work in layers. I literally took a blue pen and very roughly sketched out the painting. Then I took acrylics and used them with a lot of water to make an underpainting – at this point you don’t have to be careful, just put down colour where it’s supposed to be. And then I added oils, which is where I could actually start blending things, and get the exact shades, details and depth. The first steps are easy, because there’s no pressure when you know you’re gonna paint over it anyway. And the last step is easy, because you have the guide of the paint you’ve already applied.
- Choose a reference photo with a lot of contrast. This might be personal preference, but I can’t deal with painting full meadows with a thousand different colours in them. I might just need to learn the right techniques, but for now it’s easier to paint something with contrast. That means the dark parts are just dark, and there are big blocks of basically just one colour. That makes it a bit easier to grasp for me, and when a picture has clear shapes it’s easier to know where to begin.
- I actually only have two points, but it just looks better with a third.
The top of the trees
young and green
swaying in front of a bright blue background
We can’t walk back along our timline
but we can
oh we can
Have you never wandered the road where you learned how to bike?
Touched the doorframe you used to grab while swinging around fastly
chasing a friend
a birthday surprise
Your timeline is written in footsteps,
through mud and concrete.
and bleeding hands
the stretch of grass
Not your memories
but your actual line of time.
all up in the trees
all around the garden
My mum hung these blue curtains,
and I sit on the mattress.
There’s a weight like a rock at the bottom of my heart.
I am not visiting.
The trees, this window:
they’re seemingly permanent.
It seems I can’t get away
but if there’s purpose I dropped along these roads I can’t remember it
I think: I have so much more of that in the future,
why am I still sitting here,
all tangled up in red.
(Continuing from my last post, I’ve been sharing a lot of my art on etsy lately. Mainly pretty small things, because then they don’t have to be that expensive but it can still be an original piece. I want to write some sort of essay about that – on the merits of original art, simply because I believe there is power and beauty in that kind of shared creativity. I don’t know exactly why or how though, so I want to figure it out for myself to tell it better to others. Anyway, here’s a link.)
I’ve been making even more sky painting lately, because it grounds me somehow. When I get better at it I want to make bigger ones and make a full on exhibition, name it On the nature of daylight, after one of my favourite songs.
Here are some round ones I’m experimenting with.
Tastes like summer.
(It’s way too hot here in Sweden, but at least they’re saying it’s gonna get colder again soon. My family is disappointed. I’m not. I think living in Florida for a bit has given me enough summer heat to last a lifetime.)
I guess this is some sort of epilogue to my posts about Germany, because I just wanted to share:
1. This cool photo of me by the Swedish west coast, where we stopped while driving home.
2. And these random screenshots from my phone, because we drove home and everything was beautiful and I needed to make quick sketches of the sky so I can make actual paintings of it later.
I feel like I’ve almost posted a trilogy about Germany, but I’ve now travelled through three cities there so I guess that makes sense.
After Nürnberg and Augsburg I went to Berlin.
Actually I met up with my dad and brother there. Walked into an airconditioned hotel lobby and saw my dad get out of the elevator to greet me, and it was weird. It’s weird when you’re not travelling with your family, and suddenly they show up in some random country. I knew they were gonna be there of course, and thank God for that since otherwise I have no idea how I would have actually gotten home, but it’s still out of place somehow, like family is isolated to specific family vacations and home.
Anyway, it was nice. We rented little electric scooters for a bit and drove through Berlin.
And we found like the most amazing cafés. Here’s the first one, a really fancy one called The Barn, with the kind of actual good coffee that I can’t really appreciate because I want it cold, with chocolate and caramel and two thirds milk. Did appreciate the view though.
But this one was my actual favourite. In the centre of Berlin, you turn around a corner and end up on this big, industrial looking side street. Some of the buildings around still have bullet holes in them. And then there’s this, little green hipster oasis, right there in the midst of it. I had some sort of “rose coffee cocktail” which honestly wasn’t that good, but I felt like it said a lot about the place. So a little bit pretentious maybe, but I still absolutely loved it. Sat there for like a couple of hours, writing letters and feeling cool. Hihgly recommend.
So that ended up being mostly about cafés. But honestly, I don’t mind and hope you don’t either.
So, this is what’s happening:
I went to Nürnberg to check it out and see if I might want to move there. I think I will, it was pretty nice.
Then I went to Augsburg to meet up with some friends. (And Augsburg was like really cool, just a lot of fun to be honest, and good conversations and good people. Here’s photos of that.)
Breakfast in bed
From a field, where you could put money in a box and pick flowers.
It was raining softly. A girl with a lip piercing and two rolled up sleeping mats sticking out of her backpack stepped out from under the cover of the station and into the grey sky. A young man rolled a suitcase next to her and an elderly couple stood waiting on the other side of the road, decked out in umbrellas and plastic ponchos over their functional jackets. A bus whizzed by. Birds flew high. And for a second the rain took a breather – letting only mist cover us – as we stepped out from the overhang we had covered under. The sky was open. Grey but bright and warm with dots of birds covering it, rainwater dripping down the spires of old church towers. Slow and eternal as the traffic lights turned green.