Flying off to London is a tiring flight if you don’t have something to keep both your mind and body busy. I am not one for sitting still.
I always have my iPad along, and on this trans-Atlantic flight I also had WIFI available. Browsing the internet gets boring rather quickly since I get motion sickness and can’t read while moving. The movies offered on flight where not enticing either. So instead, I decided to paint on the iPad.
Little did I know, but I quickly got an audience. One of the flight attendants went and gathered up the rest to convene around my seat to watch me paint. They all were rather astonished it could be done on an iPad.
While this is not ideal for me, I was gracious in allowing them to observe. It is hard to concentrate and keep my mind free of distraction and interruption in a crowd. On a plane late at night, one can tune out distractions when most passengers are asleep. I had the base drawings done before my trip, so all I needed was to add the paint to each drawing. You can see the drawing lines in the paintings.
The flight attendants asked if it was my profession. I said at one time my paintings were in a local gallery for sale, but I went on to become an architect, since dropping my hobby for many years. We discussed going to Europe for the art, museums and architecture, and how I was headed to the National Gallery in London to see Van Gogh’s Sunflowers.
One flight attendant asked if I was planning to visit Amsterdam to see the Van Gogh Museum and I mentioned I was there last November. Did I see Sunflowers there? I saw a small drawing to my disappointment , but did not see any of the more identifiable series Sunflowers. Van Gogh did them in Arles, in the south of France, between 1888 and 1889, painting a total of five large canvases.
While at European museums, easels were set up for a few selected artists. They were painting from the Master works on the wall and I have to admit, some copied faithfully, but others did a “better” job. Of course, just my opinion, but I do like the more contemporary flair to the new paintings.
This painting is the one that is most often reproduced on cards, posters, mugs, tea-towels and stationery. It was also the one that Van Gogh was most proud. The image above is the actual painting hanging in the National Gallery of London. The Sunflower series was painted during a period of good cheer and hopefulness, as the Master awaited the arrival of his hero, Paul Gauguin.
While I appreciate Gauguin and saw quite a few of his works, I am far more drawn to Degas and Van Gogh. The first two ballerinas images are my interpretation of Degas’ paintings that I did on the flights to London and from Scotland. I never did paint Sunflowers, but have photographed quite a few like you saw in the previous post, Living in Happiness. Sunflowers are a symbol of good luck and happiness. Van Gogh and Degas are two artists I love to emulate, and would have loved to share studio space with them.
While my two paintings are done in pink excess, pink is a color of happiness, creativity, determination, romance, and love of life. In the psychology of color, pink calms to reassure our emotions, and short-term exposure dispels feelings of anger and aggression. It also symbolizes good health if you are lucky enough to have good health. It really is an all-round, feel-good color.
Since the psychology of color plays into our appreciation of life, I suppose subconsciously how we paint might be an indication of our peace of mind. While not happy in the joyful, gleeful and tickled pink kind of way, painting with pink might symbolize a relaxed untroubled, carefree and unhurried turn of mind. Who knows?