This first image of Woodstock shows the painted background for the foundation of my scratch-off technique. This first step differs in appearance from my last three artworks that also used this style method. The purpose of the scratching off the top layer of paint is to expose parts of the backgrounds, which creates an unique and unpredictable (not boring) contrast with the music. I could have chosen any abstract background style, but did not with my past three works. They shared a style with Where to have all the Flowers Gone. I changed this trend with Woodstock. For this artwork, I had an option the others lacked, lyrics. Instead of painting a silly nothing image for the background, I painted the lyrics that are part of the music.
This idea of removing paint to expose more than another layer of paint originates with my Bach Menuet. For that work I glued a copy of Bach’s handwritten music to the background of the canvas and then scraped off the final topcoat to expose the sheet music. This same idea works with the lyrics from Woodstock. When revealed the words add color and connection to the music and the artwork.
To paint so many words, I looked first to Jean Michel Basquiat’s handling of words (he used a lot of them in many of his artworks). Here is an example of his style from Artnet. He used oil sticks (oil paint in the form of a crayon) to write out his words. I do not have any oil sticks, so as in the past I brushed in the lyrics with the bar set at legibility.
I finished the J S Bach work, Prelude, in September. What I had not completed was the audio and the mount for the artwork. Prelude is the first work that uses the new 20watt amplifier and speaker system, whose construction and configuration took time. It was up and running only after receiving some replacement parts delayed in shipping. When they arrived, I mounted them on a board I attached to a custom-built aluminum frame that holds the speakers, amplifier and to which I could attach and remove the artwork. Here is my YouTube video of my arrangement of J S Bach Cello Suite No.1 The Prelude mounted on the frame.
Up next I will prep the background so I can apply the top coat of paint, which for this artwork will be Cerulean Blue Deep. Once the final coat dries the fun part (and mess) begins as I will then scrap of the Cerulean to review what is beneath.