KEITH NESBITT - B I O M O R P H I C . V E I N . F L O W (1974)


Watercolour study for Biomorphic Vein Flow : 1974


This is my second picture. It was just an abstract image I had in my head. The painting was destroyed when my parent's house burnt down. The final painting looked a lot like the water colour study. The actual painting used acrylic paints on a I meter square piece of wood. I was still working with colour fades but struggling with trying to match wet and dry colours. This is the hard part for me about working with acrylics – as I need to match the colour on my palette with the colour on my painting. It can take many months to actually complete a picture and it is impossible to complete while the paint is still wet on the palette and the picture. The other difficultly is in blending acrylic colours to create a colour fade. The paint dries so quickly it becomes very difficult. Both of these problems were solved when I discovered oil paints. The abstract imagery reminded me of natural biological shapes and felt like corpuscles rushing down a blood vessel. Hence the name Biomorphic Vein Flow. This biomorphic imagery would later appear in many of my abstract paintings. You can also see the pencil squares on top of the diagram. I liked to keep the picture as close as possible to what first appeared in my mind's eye, so frequently I transfer the original concept to the canvas by dividing the drawing into squares and just copying each square onto the canvas. This is a rather practical technique I learnt in colouring in books.


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