Art comes from inside through inspiration. As a friend and I discussed "mood" plays a part in my ability to paint. Like music and candles on a romantic evening. Or the sound of rain falling softly on a tin roof during a spring rain shower. The smell of coffee in the morning. Poetry always inspires. For me to get the artistic juices moving on all art projects I need "mood". I visit museums, read books, view art, read poems, play music. One of the best sources are the colorful paintings of Vincent Van Gogh. I have several books of his art and other "Post-Impressionists". After reading and looking through them I then get inspired and use what I learned to paint something of my life, growing up or living now. Places, people, things that have affected me in some way. Hopefully the "mood" that I set comes through in the painting and then affects the viewer. Maybe in a different way but the base of the mood is there, whether it be happy, sad, or whatever.
Take a look at a few of these images. My latest self portrait was inspired by me seeing myself in a mirror when I was dressed one day in a straw hat. It reminded me of Van Gogh yet I could not place how or what of Van Gogh was the "mood". So I did a photograph looked it over and discovered this. (See pictures for comparison.)
Compare what I did above to this Van Gogh painting of "Porträt des alten Bauers Patience Escalier, 1888, Oil on canvas.
See the influence? Yet see the differences too. At first when I saw myself in a mirror I remembered a Van Gogh self portrait of him in a straw hat so I looked in my book but the "mood' was not in that painting. Then I saw "Patients Escalier" and voila I had it and painted it. There are more moments like this in my paintings and I will have to discuss them in another blog post.
As you see this is the painting that first came to mind but it was not the correct one and expresses a different mood. My mind was aware of the similarities of a Van Gogh but consciously I thought this one when it was another deep inside. All I needed was "Patients".