Finding Meaning In The Daily Life
In March 2020, at the beginning of quarantine, I started a very meaningful series, my Home Series. Unable to attend in person class any longer, I had to get creative with what I had. My instructor asked me to paint from life, but I was tired of painting compositions of flowers and other monotonous objects. I started painting specific corners of my house. Immediately, I fell in love with how the light would hit the objects in my home at specific times, like the golden hour. I began by painting a corner in the sunroom, my new home studio, bedroom, and kitchen. I chose various colors for the walls, furniture, and objects. I left the real world outside the canvas and allowed my own world to exist inside of it.
Slowly, I added characters to the space. My husband and my dog are the ones that I spend the most time with, so I decided to capture them in moments that I find amusing, but that were also very intimate and private to us. Moments that everyone can relate to at this time. The repetitive daily life suddenly became my number one interest. Looking for new moments to paint, to which I could add my own touch, was the goal.
The idea for a painting always starts from a moment in real life. I realize that the moment I am living in is meaningful or has something that I find interesting. I immediately try to capture the images with the camera on my phone. After gathering a couple of special moments, I begin sketching out a few different compositions until I find one that I like enough to start painting. The sketch gives me a generic idea, but the magic happens on the actual canvas.I start by outlining the main shapes. I generally prefer going big, at least 3 by 4 feet, if not larger. First, I lay a thin layer of acrylic paint in order to see and try different colors, shadows, and shapes. Using the photographs as a reference, I proceed with my own imagination and I make the scene appear the way I want. I modify the space, the perspective, and the shadows to my own advantage. From there, I remove objects and add new ones. I start by making my own patterns on the floor and the wall, and I continue placing them wherever the painting asks me to. Once happy with the result, I switch to oil paint to have the colors and tones appear more intense and vibrant.
I love alternating between flat areas and illusionistic moments. I leave some areas to rest, where there are no details, and enjoy other areas which are loaded with information. The paintings that are part of this thesis will contain a romantic narrative that is autobiographical, intimate, and private. A painting is the perfect tool which permits me to show my private life. It is also the ideal medium for me to create a distance between my personal life and the viewer.Inside the painting, it is a fictional environment in which I can tell the story I want. Outside of the painting, however, it is reality. I am interested in capturing daily life events because they are habits, but they always happen in a slightly different way. For example, my husband cooking is his habit, but what he makes, how he makes it, his mood of the day, and his energy, always vary. That is what interests me, the simple fact that there is uniqueness in everyday life. This series of work is an effort to cherish daily life, especially in a time where the pandemic is affecting our social interactions. I understand a painting as a document of life in which there are a couple of different moments compressed into a single image.
I used to paint in a photorealistic way, until I understood that my work goes beyond a simple photograph. Each painting is a collusion of observation, imagination, and influences from other artists. My pieces may appear quiet at first, but they are loaded with information about my daily life, emotions, struggles, and people around me. I make sure to add some irony, to always include my dog, and to modify a couple of details to make the viewer laugh. Changing the perspective drastically makes each piece more interesting and intriguing. By adding specific clues, I suggest a narrative in my work. For example, I create a painting within a painting to show that I am an artist, or I add objects that showcase some of my interests, such as books, food, shoes, and mountains.