This is my latest piece, Sensational Summer Girl. I completed her last night and a question I was asked about it prompted me to write this post. The person asking the question was very complimentary but wanted to know why I've been painting women, particularly women of the type depicted here. Well, I've given the question much consideration and the answer is three-fold.
First, I'm a man. More than that, I'm a straight man. I like women. I have always found the female body to be an exquisite thing of great beauty. I've painted women of all shapes and sizes throughout my career, big ones, small ones, skinny ones, chubby ones and some in between. I've also painted men when the mood strikes.
Along the same line, art often imitates life. That's probably why many of my females have a certain body type. Even if it's not a conscious thing, what you live with or have seen or experienced gets into your head, and for me, comes out in my art. And for the past 4 plus years, I've lived with a woman that has a certain body type, that likely explains a lot as far as the specific question that was posed to me (those that have seen Misty know exactly what I mean). But it doesn't explain everything. It may explain certain individual figures, but I'm often also inspired by a picture I see, or something on t.v., or maybe even just an interesting person I've passed on the street. You just never know where inspiration will come from; that's what so great about it.
But finally, and maybe more importantly from an artistic point of view, is the fact that the figure, as in the human figure, is widely considered to be one of the most difficult things to get right in painting. It makes sense, we humans are a complex lot. And I'm never one to shy away from a challenge so, I like to stretch my painting muscle, to challenge myself. It's a necessary thing to do in order to grow and progress as an artist. Oh, and it's fun, there's that too.