Integrating portraiture with landscape

I've been working on an entry into the Beep Wales Painting Prize over the last couple of months and luckily had an idea for a painting before I actually knew what their theme would be. This year they've asked for entries based on the anti-hero, a protagonist or antagonist, looking to the literary works of Dylan Thomas. His short stories are odd, mismatched and ludicrous... which added to my idea of an enigmatic, abstracted landscape in which a rebel appears challenging the norms of this disenchanted world.

Even though my current practise focuses on the landscape, I have been keen to integrate more portraiture into my works. The Beep opportunity has given me the chance to do this and test out a few ideas, however it can be hard to combine the two or even go from one style of painting to another. So yes, its no easy task to undertake.

For one, I needed to think about the composition. As my painting was going to include more elements I had to find the right balance. Should my focus be more on the portrait/rebel or the landscape/disenchanted world...

Another was the mixed media angle... I love to combine painting mediums and materials. How should I do this and once again where should the focus lie...

Keeping to the theme. Making sure I kept in mind the Beep's Dylan Thomas theme and that it was more portrait based than landscape...

Getting the 'portraiture' details correct... a side-on view or full profile. How detailed, how abstracted? What reference materials should I use in terms of images, photographs, readings...

And yes my research... images yes but more so of imagination. Creating a world that appears enigmatic, changeable, disjointed, cracked... and my rebel too for no-one is perfect or infallible. Thomas's works are essential reading to gain a sense of perspective and difference.

I have only just started my journey and who knows where it will take me!

Beep Painting Prize
Entries open to the 15th August

Please take note that your art may flourish from reading this blog :)


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