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Paintography. Where have I been…?

On my first T-shirt, Karen wrote a comment “…where have you been Michael…?” so here goes!

I’ve been busy with 2, print-on-demand books, that I’ve just had published in America. The most recent one that I received yesterday, 24 July 07, is a 56 page, hard cover 7″×7″ about my ‘I Love This Country’ series. It’s a mixture of the heart designs and the cards together with photos of the trees and pods in situ. It’s a small book aimed at the tourist market (there’s a lot in Cairns) and the season is just beginning to pick up.

My first book though was a whopper 142 pages, hard cover 13″×11″ titled ‘The Art of Respect’. Basically I was fed up with the response from galleries up here to digital art – Paintography – that I needed to be able to show clearly what can be achieved. So I ended up creating 78 new works (2×39) and filled the book, 1 per page, edge to edge, and finally with a virtual gallery at the end to show how they would appear in a gallery situation.

Here’s a quote from the concept conclusion:

…The conceptual design of the book has evolved and matured to produce a three-part study that I have presented through a series of sequential unique paintographs. In conjunction with the creative art of paintography are the narrative pages that extend the subliminal perspective of the title of the book ‘The Art of Respect‘.

Respect is a very emotive word and its interpretation is personal to each and every-one of us. The profound statements used as introductions to each section of the book are a response to the need for an ideal. The ideology has a need for digital art to be recognised and paintography to be the bridge linking art of the 21st century, through printing technology, with traditional conventional art and photographic art. This modern descriptive word ‘Paintography‘ is so new it‘s not in the dictionary yet. In the American Oxford Dictionary Edition 2, the definition of art lists 59 categories of Art Techniques and Media but not one mention of digital computer art. With all due respect, there has to be a breakthrough.

Disrespect is symbolically portrayed throughout Parts 1 and 2. You may question why the xxxxxx xxxxx, xxxxxxxxxx xx xxxxx, xxxxxxxxx xxxxx, xxxxx, xxxxxxxx xxx xxxxxx xxxxx. How often has this affected you and what effect did this lack of respect have? The reader would be unaware of the xxxxxxxxx within. Reaction? Annoyance, irritation and sadness at finding such a lack of respect xxx xxx xxxx not to mention the loss of xxxxxxxxxx, xxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxx, or conclusions left undone.

Prejudgements and dismissive reactions to digital art to be considered worthy of respect are often due to lack of adequate information. This book and the images contained in its pictorial essay is a determined effort on my part to validate the art of paintography. The images themselves are provocative, or are they? Has a prejudgement been made already, resulting in a lack of respect and loss of respect for the fictional character which intonates a slurred reputation immediately. The use of text fuels the imagination, yet what was actually said?

In Part 2, artistically I have used the element of disrespect with a twist to create another ideology. Can disrespect become respect? Review the changes of the not so random xxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxx sections. What once was disrespectful has now deliberately become part of the image and adds even more to the composition. This xxxxxxxxx can be admired and given value as respectable art.

Part 3 of the book – The Gallery – demonstrates the visual impact of the paintographs exhibited. Recognition of acceptance and value has been respectfully earned and the measure of this success stands as a symbol of accreditation – the red dot •

This book has been a creative journey and is the art in its entirety.
To quote:
‘Success is not measured by the position one has reached in life,
rather by the obstacles overcome while trying to succeed.‘ Booker T.
< end of quote >

To understand the xxxxx’s that I have inserted above you would have to view the book. This is an artist’s book, NOT a book about an artist. Each book is an original by virtue of the modifications I do to each one before it gets sent out. There is an element of shock and surprise within the book and if I were to mention what they are there would be no more shock and the impact would be lost. Bit of a dilemma really when trying to describe it without giving away too much.

This book has been entered into an ’Artist’s Book Award’ with the results being announced on 7th August – fingers crossed!

My original image in Part 1 was divided into 39 pieces as per an Excel spreadsheet – 3 rows and 13 columns. Each ‘cell’ became a page of the book and if all the images were cut out of two books you would be able to re-construct the image into an original measuring [(13×13″ by 3×11″) = 169″×33″ or (430cm x 84cm] Pretty big!

Part 2’s intro states: “The whole is equal to the sum of it’s parts – but can a part be greater than the whole?” Using the part 1 paintographs, which all have the same paintographic feel, I wanted to see how far I could take each page paintographically. I ended up with about 140 different paintographs.

I’m still trying to work out how best to display the images on my site and RB. ‘Coming soon’.

So. A lot of work done over the last few months which is why I haven’t uploaded much to the Bubble.

I exhibited at the Cairns show last week and sold both 2′×2′ paintographs – ‘Gathered Here Today’ and ‘Kimono Reveals #1’ in the ‘art’ display and also got 1st and 3rd prize in the digital-manipulation photography display with ‘Kimono – The Revealing #3’ and ‘Fallen Tapestry’. All good moral boosters!

Thanks for reading.

Journal Comments

  • Cliff Vestergaard
  • Karen Cougan
  • shanghaiwu