City Cut Outs

posted in: Blog, Uncategorized | 3

Marvel Comics demonstrated speed and motion can be indicated with attenuated converging  or radiating lines as. Speed can also be suggested through exaggerated perspective along with blurring.  But, with blurred edges the picture’s legibility is diminished and therefore, recognition of the subject will also be diminished. More speed in a picture gets you less image accuracy and stability. This reminds me of the electron problem. You can measure its location but not its motion or you can measure its motion but not its location.

Marvel Comics among others solved this problem through expressive converging or radiating lines or shapes which were accompanied by a single word like POW! Taking a cue from the improved legibility offered by sharp edges I taped Dibond panels with “quick release” painter’s tape. After taping I used a razor knife to excise areas which I would  later over-paint and, select areas which would receive no paint. Then, I removed the tape and resumed painting.  This process can go through several repeated cycles as you will see.

In my first image (example 1) I begin cutting through the vinyl film on the Dibond. You can see where I needed to add  blue tape because, I changed my mind about previously cut areas. Next, (example 2) I cover the panel with paint as if there were no taped areas below. I next remove the razored areas of tape revealing clear, sharp edged shapes which reinforce the sense of urban geometry (example 3). Example 4 presents the image after I have resumed painting on it. I cut, then paint and then re-tape several times to get to example 4.

Example 1. Step one, I razor cut and tape the panel in preparation for painting.

Example 2. Step two, first painting of the image with tape beneath the painted area. It awaits razoring.

Example 3. Step three; Razored areas are removed revealing sharp shapes,

Example 4. Step four, painting recommences on the surface,

With my next examples (5 through 7), I begin with a small study of my subject as a prototype for a larger painting (example 5).  Next, I painted the larger scale image but, without tape (example 6). Next, I apply tape to the surface of this painting, repaint the surface, razor-cut shapes into the tape then, remove tape to see if I am approaching warp speed (example 7). I determine I have not yet achieved a satisfactory speeding effect so, I re-tape,  repaint, cut again and finally remove tape . The latest result can be seen in example 8.

Example 5.  Step one, Study for later larger image, “City in Motion” 12×12”.

Example 6.  Step two, First application of paint for larger image of “City in Motion” 36×36,

Example 7.  Step three, Image has been taped, razored, and tape removed to reveal intermediate unsatisfactory state,

Example 8. Step four after further taping, razoring and repainting the image in its current state.


3 Responses

  1. John Love

    Amazing stuff . full of helpful instruction…will need to go over this many times to grasp the concepts…very insightful.

  2. Sue

    I like the first and final stage the same. The make me think of when I visit in New York

  3. Emily Ligon

    I love seeing this process, especially since I’ve been hesitant to use tape with oils. I would love to learn more about the timing of the process in terms of drying.

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