Painting Tension: Secrets of A Modern Painter
Secrets of A Modern Painter: Painting Tension

Painting Tension

Create tension in your paintings and attempt to hold onto it for as long as possible. Viewers must feel the forces of light and darkness, good and evil, birth and death. Consider the music of Chopin and Beethoven: how their music inspires us to grow in depth and understanding of human nature.

Know where the journey begins: What elements are we starting with? How are they explored and how are they resolved? Listen to how melodies are repeated and altered by different instruments, and how tension arises as the harmonies get progressively more complex, how maybe the speed picks up, and the lines of notes communicate in a way that almost seem to be like a battle, like the struggle for humanity to find traction on the earth, to find resolution and peace.

Consider the focal points of your canvas as the heights of tension or resolution, both physical and existential, and don’t be satisfied with just fancy brushwork or increased contrasts - pull the viewer in and make them feel as if the main character is standing on the edge of a precipice, reaching out, praying for the strength to survive.

We must be made to feel the struggle of life; let us feel your struggle to create, to open yourself to how powerful artistic freedom is and the impulse to succeed in capturing it in a single frame, in a frozen and suspended moment in time.

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