Sunday, 7 November 2010
The Most Exhilarating of Powders
Magic powder that can make you happy? Plenty of variants out there. But chalk pastels are the stuff of Dreams. Just look at Redon (see below). Alchemical aspirations are possible with chalks. Here are some Very Good Reasons to play with chalk pastels:
1. They are portable and excellent for using outside
2. Building a painting is very immediate and physical, you press the chalk into whatever ground you're using with your hands. This is childishly satisfying
3. Your hands will look very interesting when you're done and you can avoid food preparation and laundry in good conscience
4. A chalk painting is ephemeral - if you're unhappy with results, you can just wipe away what isn't working, and remake that area.
5. Working with a dry medium, you can travel with your work right away
Yes, you get pigment in your skin, clothes and in your nose, but there's a price for everything. I think my respiratory system can take it.
Working with chalk takes some practice.
"It is precisely from the regret left by the imperfect work that the next one can be born." That's what Redon says.
And clearly, he is in a position of knowledge. He presents a luminous example of What is Possible. Sigh. Maybe next time. I live in hope.
Head of Orpheus Odilon Redon