Human figure art is among the toughest genres, precisely because all of us have a working understanding of what a person looks like. If it looks wrong, then it probably is incorrect, because that is how we live our everyday lives, by our initial impressions. And that is never truer than when we are looking at others, be it in person or using a painting or photograph. So there is little if any room for mistake in figurative art. Therein lays the lure and the challenge of working on human body paintings. We are drawn by the Challenge all musicians take on the human body at some point of their careers, and many give up. Not because they are not capable, but mainly since they are not human body artists. Human figure artists or figurative artists as they are generally known are a breed unto themselves. Never happy, always looking for that pose or gesture or look that wills epiphanies a common everyday spectacle.
Such painting can make them fortunately for those elusive works, are rarer and rarer to come by in a modern setting. The reason fortunately is because, in case you have not already noticed, we are all constantly bombarded by a range of images every day, every day, all day. It is the world we live in. We have got television, DVDs, computers, blackberries ad infinitum, images coming at us from every conceivable angle, which makes it increasingly tough to be alone with our thoughts. And all fantastic art can only emerge from an area of aloneness. The genesis of a fantastic painting could be born years before. In the human figure kingdom, it might be something someone did, or said or the way they said it struck a chord on a certain level, then these ideas were left to break, gestating, only to be reborn again under the right conditions.
Of course countless possible paintings are left to perish in the depths of their brain, but a few do emerge and one of those perhaps one or two may be worth keeping. The best ones arrive if the inner critic is silenced and censorship is thrown into the wind. Then, once the painting is complete the battle of assurance starts and the long climb to self-belief at the job, regardless of what the outer critics throw at you. Sometimes disturbing images he produced and you had been wise to check out. There is a lot of Great body kun dolls out there. The great ones always add something new to your conversation with itself, and leave you looking at the world and the people in it a bit differently every time.