I am sometimes asked where I get my ideas for painting and writing. In these times, of immediate, constant and comprehensive commercial media and social media documentation of occurrences, images and ideas, it can be difficult to find ideas and motives for both painting and writing that have a possibility of permanence/surviving from one month to the next since world developments and the ongoing conscious shift seem to be advancing both slowly and with lightning speed. Similarly, art photography has moved quite close to realistic and semi-abstract painting art, and in the eyes-of-some is possibly rendering painting to become a somewhat outdated contemporary art form. But, regardless of artistic discipline, at its core art is about timelessness and about seeing more than that which meets the eye, at any given moment … it involves digging beneath the surface to find ways of depicting both immediacy and a degree of impermanence, plus an overall framework/perspective, movement and/or consequences, and more. This holds true of both realistic, semi-realistic and abstract painting. Each work of art is a documentation of a thought, in a moment, in a process … and yet within an overall framework of many other perspectives, political/social/environmental/economic developments, etc. over time. It is perhaps normal to focus upon humanity/portraiture, nature, landscapes and the psychological/social elements of life at the moment and the epoch. But one of the most constant aspects of life on this planet is also perhaps one of the most impermanent ones — as well as one of those which pose the greatest threats and a sense of endless possibility: clouds. Clouds come and go — in peace, with dramatic warnings, sometimes with thundering punishment, and always with a sense of soulful and planetary cleansing/purification. As with in creating paintings, with clouds there are always several processes and developments going on concurrently, and permanence is subjective.
The old masters were generally quite adept at understanding the importance of framing landscapes, and oftentimes dramatic Earth-life scenes, with clouds. I have painted many paintings with clouds as a focus. This because clouds are not merely an aspect of framing motives and putting human drama into an overall perspective, but they are also sometimes worthy of being the primary focus and motive.
Therefore, I sometimes use photography as inspiration for paintings. Here are some of my clouds photographs: