A Great Big Sled Final Image. Here is another version of this wonderful Christmas song with a modern edge to it. When you hear those bells, you are listening to this artwork.
This finished artwork uses six canvas panels with a finished length of sixty inches. Any picture of this artwork will never compare with seeing it in person. No image I can produce captures the look of the gold and silver paint that dominates this work. This resulted in a long struggle to produce a decent canvas image for this years Christmas cards. Finally, under the press of mailing dates, and the conclusion that I could not produce a match of the work, I did my best to print something. This years Christmas card printing is largest ever with thirty copies.
Looking at the overall finished artwork I like the look of the candy cane stems. They were a lot of work, not tedious, but time-consuming. I especially like the look of those long blue objects that are my version of musical Rests. I painted over a dozen Rests, each different from the last, in the last Vivaldi. You can see that look being carried over in this artwork. What I am seeing in my Rests, is a good solution in design that has quickly become a mature style. The Rests will certainly evolve over time, but not out of need or necessity.
My symbols for the bell sounds, surrounded by extra circles, are nothing special, but they work, filling space while adding interest, and the opportunity to add extra canvases to make the look of this artwork, unique. My musical vine looking Slurs, you see all across the top of the canvases, and repeated in a red color in the music, give a Christmas look to the work, and fill space while pushing the music across the canvas. My red and green rectangles I like for their sharp edges counter the rounded forms of the slurs and the other rounded objects in the music. My choice of words where the best option, that balance well, and flow nicely across the painting. Still, If I would have had another choice I would have left out the word ‘me.’ I like words to connect personally to the viewer, leaving me out of the picture, but this did not work.
As this art has taught me over the years, I have come to respect the limitations when producing each painting. Each of these finished artworks are a display of an abstract idea that is music, and the price of admission that allows me to paint another. I always hope that my next artwork will somehow solve the disappointments with the last painting, but I know that Music is a vastly diverse language, so that challenge is great. I have to constantly look at my art and question how I paint, and if I can find another, better way, to visualize sound that a viewer can relate to. This makes everything complicated because for this art to evolve artistically, I have to keep an open mind, with all of its options, no matter the direction this may turn me. It is that search to find new ways to apply the colors of acrylic paint to pieces of canvas, that will forever remain the goal. This years Christmas painting breaks no new ground, solves no problems, and answers nothing. That is what I expect from the last artwork of the year. Instead, in all of its non answer glory, It is a summary of this art’s 2014 style that leaves open another opportunity for improvement. On to 2015 where the best artwork is yet to be built.
Scott Von Holzen