Texture and Abstraction
As an artist who paints mainly smooth portraits, there have been times I have wanted to break from pattern and do something completely wild with movement and thick with texture-- I'm sure I'm not alone in this notion-- although admittedly, I have yet to truly experience doing so. Today's artist, however, freely executes such style as his main course of action when creating, and seems a man vacant of fear as he layers paint and exercises movement with each stroke onto canvas; allow me to introduce abstract artist Nicholas Ashton.
Pictured below are a few of his works, but as to what he uses to create them, well that's the interesting part. Having attempted abstract myself, my first go-to paint tool is usually a simple palette knife, but for this man, a palette knife is his last resort. Let's imagine for an instant that instead of a palette knife, we use a window squeegee, a copper pipe, a necklace, a pinecone, and then if that wasn't enough, use a little flex seal for added texture? That's right, anything but the ordinary.
Now, I can't tell exactly which of these pieces uses what, but what I can at least recognize is the incredible texture his tools of choice create. The flex seal is a nice touch, and according to the artist, is a more sculptable way to use the medium (he uses Acrylic mostly). It's definitely a technique I would like to experiment with myself. --I've just got to make a quick stop to the Home Depot (although it's almost as dangerous of a place to visit for me as the local art store if you know what I mean)--
Ashton seems to favor using bold color in his works and has quite the eye for color theory, even when making monochromatic artworks such as the ones above. Take for instance the piece on the right. Dark and light blues paired with an almost grey-purple create unison in the fact that they are all cool colors, but the touch of red creates a nice accent and compliments the cool blues and purple adroitly as it creates depth within the piece.
Below, Ashton reiterates the color theme, minus the purple-- yet in a different respect, as there exists a clear subject matter, or focus perhaps, rather than repetitive execution of color present in the majority of his pieces (used to create overall balance in a piece, especially in abstractions). In order to create cohesion between the red circle and the surrounding blue, Ashton added bits of blue and white across the surface of the red, and therefore accomplished said cohesion.
With abstract, an artwork can become so many things, can have any kind of meaning, especially when left "untitled," like many of Ashton's works are. However, title or not, his art is his outlet, and in his studio music manifests into muse to inspire and drive him: leaving behind his worries, frustration, as he paints. What better way to escape the "noise of life," then block it out with the noise of inspiration?
Thank you, Nicholas Ashton, for allowing me to feature your work on my page. It was an honor to get to know about your work and the techniques behind them. Safe to assume I speak for many when I say "keep up the good work!"
If you'd like to see more of Ashton's art, follow the link at the end of this feature (under the photo). Feel free to comment and tell me or the artist what you think!
I hope you all join me Friday to meet an artist with a seemingly delicate pen as she creates pieces that resonate with the nirvanic idea of simplicity.