One night I was cutting up a green pepper for dinner and there was an “ah ha” moment when I looked at those incredible seeds that looked like some alien creature, with its little seeds all in a neat row, adhering to the rib of the pepper. “Genius” I thought, and ran for the camera, explaining to George that he would have to wait for food. (He was used to this behavior.)
I looked at all the fruits and vegetables I was eating with an eye to making a painting. And in my local Publix market I could find potential painting subjects that were foreign, and unpronounceable.
I began calling this the “Seed Series” but after about five or six of them were hanging together it seemed like a rather lame title, so it was changed to “Genesis” which I think is much more appropriate.
I am not finished with this series. I don’t know why I paint in series, but I do. Some of my series have a set number of paintings in the series before I start. But this series has always been open-ended and I have no idea how many there will be or when I’m going to call it quits.
The magic of these paintings lies in the cut of the fruit or vegetable. It is not unusual for me to try out many different cuts, with many different camera shots and different lighting. I think I tried the cucumber at least 5 times with various cuts, before I arrived at the one I finally painted. I counted the digital images in my file for the Cucumber and I have 117 images that were possible choices before settling on the image I finally chose, and I would guess that I deleted at least 250 images from my computer that were just taking up space.
Being the kind of mystical person that I am, I have asked the fruit or vegetable to tell me what would be the best way to present it. I always get the perfect answer! “Cut me this way”, said the Avocado. And voila, it was the perfect view.
Now that 35 Genesis paintings have been completed (Fall 2015) I am searching for more exotic fruits and vegetables that some of the ethnic markets in Tampa carry. The Publix market around the corner has some exotics that I can’t wait to paint! Stay tuned for the Mamey Sapote, the Tomatillo, and the Carambola, to name a few of the wonderful lineup of things to come.