acrylic on canvas
10" x 30"
Here is a bit of my process leading up to this painting. I've been doing a lot of thumbnail sketching lately on my iPad and I really like how I can do quick compositions on the go with color.
When I first had the idea of a recently deceased diver, I sketched him out as a loose marionette that was being manipulated by some playful eels. I drew it up, but I was unhappy with how cramped everything felt. A little too boxed in and I was struggling with where to actually place the eels.
The next study I did was actually drawn with my finger on my iPhone as I was in a waiting room. I tried a different composition that told a bit more of a story - with the eels seen wrapped around the diver's breathing tube that lead down to the tragedy at the bottom. I felt like I had something here, but I just wasn't happy with the limitations of the eel shapes. The floating diver, with his body hunched over, was a bit more of a downer that I intended.
For the final composition, I went back to the iPad and drew up a similar idea but just changed the creature species. The octopus seemed like a natural choice for more interesting shapes, providing offset snaking with the multiple arms and bulbous head. I pretty much transferred that design verbatim to the canvas and painted from there.
The Spring members show will be on display until May 23rd at the Elmhurst Art Museum.