Thursday, January 6, 2011

Old paintings of Antarctica

Dear readers, humor some nostalgia and rumination, please.

These aren't new, but are new to this blog, since they're older than it.

I recently went through a lot of old work, especially Antarctic work, for a good, talented friend named Rob Bilek who wanted to do an art trade.

I went to Antarctica in 2005 to paint for three months. It's a huge part of my life, but truthfully I've done very little with the work in about a year. I've been too involved in work with Big Huge Games, teaching, and other artistic pursuits.

Seeing these, looking closely at them, kinda breaks my heart.

I'll never be able to leave oil painting behind for digital completely.

Real media breathes in a way digital cannot, and I say this with full knowledge that I am as much now a digital artist as I am anything else. In another context, I would cry out the virtues of digital work.

Here, though, I get caught up in those little moments of chaotic abstraction happen in landscape paintings with oil or watercolor. They make me catch my breath. I get washed over in it.

And remembering painting Antarctica makes me terribly nostalgic. Looking back at art I did at specific times in my life is like listening to music you listened to in a specific place.
I always return to Antarctica as a subject, and I suspect it's time to explore further, even if it's from my memories and my studio here in Baltimore. That sometimes seems odd to me, since I was only there for three months, and it's been five years now.
But as artists, we have to be honest with ourselves if we're to work honestly, as well, and Antarctica dug deep into me and has never let go.


fine art shipping said...

I love the style of your paintings.It looks very cool.Great post.

wren said...

Colin, astounding posts - both of them. This one - the way you composed your words and images, and the grand scale and brilliant colors of this Antarctica series just blew my mind. That inspiration, that watershed moment from being there is clearly still with you. Thank you for sharing it.

Colin Campbell said...

Thanks so much, Wren. It was a little self-indulgent, but if there's a nugget or two in there, I'm glad I shared.

lalove said...

Colin, I'm catching up on your blog & I'm so excited to see these lovely paintings again! And so happy to hear that Antarctica continues to inspire your work... I'm looking forward to more of your explorations on the subject. It's a place that continues to influence me in so many unexpected ways.