Abstract Sketches

I usually paint digitally but my first love paint on canvas. I have very few paintings anymore on canvas but I have hundreds of sketches. Here are just a few.

Abstract in Colour . Abstract in Colour 2

One of the things I've noticed about my artwork is that I lean to one side of the paper or canvas. I'm drawn to certain colours, usually the darker colours and I like to layer and add illusion as well as hidden images. Many of my abstract sketches are up and down, filled with arrows, cross hatching and small asterix type designs.

For as long as I can remember I've added arrows to my work. Why? I finally came up with the reason. I believe in life we are told which way to go, which direction is right and which is wrong. We're told which side of the street to walk on, which street should not be entered, which way is south, north, the straight path or a detour. Arrows and directions are part of our everyday life. It is easy to become overwhelmed by constantly being guided. Many times the instruction arrows are to lead us down the right path and keep us safe. It's wise to follow arrows and directional signs but I still find the constant bombardment of "this is how you should do things" overwhelming. I take the everyday "go this way" and add it to my art. Adding arrows and placing them where I want them helps me feel more in control of my destiny.

I have at least 5 full sketch books of nothing but arrows and lines, crosshatches and geometric shapes. In them you'll see that theme but you'll also see me break composition and artistic logic by adding a bright, bold colour where it doesn't belong. It's intended as a strong statement against order and forced compliance.

Do you analyze your own artwork? Are certain patterns and techniques intended to express deeper thoughts and go beyond what is accepted as good compositions and presentation?

F. Magdalene

4 thoughts on “Abstract Sketches

  1. I find there are a lot of arrows as well as simple plane shapes in my doodling. I went through a period in time when I doodled nothing but triangles.

  2. Marcy

    My abstract doodles are more about curves -- lots of lines, but usually curvy lines. Spirals, circles. Even the triangles are usually curved. I've never really thought about why I doodle the way I do.

    When I finally developed a dulcimer soundhole insert I liked, I could see all sorts of ideas in it that I didn't put there on purpose.

  3. F.Magdalene

    Post author

    To KatM -
    I've seen some of your artwork. I'd like to see more.
    Also, you're a great photographer. Your photos of the park on Flickr are wonderful.

    To Marcy -
    "To me, the whole design has a feeling of movement within boundaries, freedom and energy within structure, a kind of sweetly ordered wildness." That is really cool!!! Free within boundaries is a great way to express it.

  4. What you saw is pretty much the bulk of it. I'm not an artist by any stretch of the imagination. I had to drop the art class I tried in high school because I was flunking it. No, not getting a B (flunking by my standards). Flunking as in getting less than an F. I ended up being a Spanish tutor instead...

    Heh, my kids always laugh at my drawings. I tell them I'm a teacher not an artist.

    I am a better photographer. I need to take some pictures of Ulsan. Most of the pics I have are of my kids and their activities.

No need to feel nervous, comment if you'd like.