As I promised in my last blog post I’ll now show you my finished abstract painting of Time. It’s painted in acrylics on a large block canvas measuring 31 x 24 inches and although it isn’t shown here the painting extends down the sides of the canvas, and the wax part is thicker in flowing texture, as are the areas outside the clock face.
When I started to think about the concept of time, I decided there are a number of things that we automatically consider regarding it – the clock face was the obvious one, and night and day, but there were also hours, minutes, weeks, months, years, the passing of time, and time in motion. I wanted to put all of them in this one painting. And I wanted there to be no doubt as to what the picture was about. Its about ALL time.
The obvious place to start was with a clock face, splitting it into night and day showing twilight and dawn within the merging purples and the sun and moon central to each part. Next I put the twelve numbers around the clock face, but then I could see there was something within those numbers that I could use for the other aspects of time, so on the outside of the clock face I put an 8 next to the 2, illustrating months as being the 28 day period, and 65 next to the 3 illustrating the year by the 365 days in it. The 7 was made brighter and more prominent by making it a striking red against the turquoise illustrating 7 days of the week, the red shape outside the clock face is a co-joined 24, for the 24 hour clock and making the three numbers 24-7 as the contempory “all the time” is referred to.
Of course some numbers were used two fold, in that the 12 is for the clock but also for the months in the year. And the 60 outside the clock face is for seconds in a minute, and of course minutes in an hour.
To show the minutes within the clock, the 11 has its 1’s joined to the other 1’s.
The numbers are painted as different sizes, shapes and colours, because depending on the day or night, some hours are more or less important to us. The hours we have to work drag, the time we finish work is the one we look forward to, the hours we get up shine brighter knowing we have to pull ourselves out of bed, the time we go out to meet friends is something we look forward to, the hours we eat meals are anticipatedwith relish, the hours we lie awake in the early hours wishing for sleep are a beacon for insomnia. We all have our favourite times, and each hour has its own personality, day or night.
To show the movement of time, the outside of the clock face is melting into the sands of time that are in the hourglass – that being an old fashioned way of showing time, and also becoming the candle wax that melts into the bottom right hand corner, candles being an ancient way of marking time with the lines on the side of the candle burning down as the wick is lit.
I’ve also incorporated movement as in the waves of time flowing across the picture, which is shown with the texture in the paint as well.
In the top right hand side of the picture is gold paint for the rare golden moments of time that we value so much.
And what time is it? Its five o’clock which is why there is the letter T by the five, which gives the painting the title “Time for tea”!