There are two sections of my newest work that I have yet to paint: one is the figure of Humphry Marshall and the other is the base of the tree.
With Humphry I have a very clear idea of what he will ultimately look like, and how I will execute that part of the painting. The tree and particularly its roots are more unknown, I’ve been avoiding that part of the piece until now. I talked about the roots and their intentional resemblance to human figures in my ‘Getting Philosophical’ blog (which you should look at if you haven’t) and now is the time to make some final decisions. I asked the question “is seeing a figure in the roots a matter of artist intent, human nature, perception, or psychology?” and now I aim to answer it, at least for myself. No matter what I do I have to make the roots mesh with the rest of the painting visually, but will I make them mesh conceptually? Experimentation is an important part of growing as an artist, even if it is risky.