When it comes to choosing props, it's good to have a large collection to start with.
I am always collecting props, whether it's a beat-up wrench I find on the street, or a cute little egg cup in a yard sale. As soon as I see an interesting object, I start to imagine how I might paint it.
Blue Egg Cup, oil on linen panel, 6"w x 6"h
When I have time, I do quick studies of my finds, to see?how they perform in a ?composition. ?Even for a small painting, choosing props can take time, because everything has to work together.
These two small paintings provided the stage for some recent auditions. I already have ideas for my Neanderthal friend, though next time I might?give him a more elegant setting.
Old Boyfriend, oil on gessoed panel, 8"w x 8"h
When I begin thinking about a still life, I want to find props that evoke a response in me, and might do the same for a viewer.
The object?must embody some form of excitement, feeling, or interest. It might make me laugh, or have qualities related to memory, relationships, or even sounds. I look for unexpected?poetic connections between things, and I also want them to have the right colors and textures to?enhance my composition.
There are so many potential props in the world that I am in danger of filling my house with them. I try to keep them organized, and, about once a month, I go searching though about 20 plastic bins for something I know I have, but can't find. ?Yes, of course?it's in the 20th?box.
Want to see a small sample of my prop collection? Here is a link to my video (2.37 minutes): The Object as Muse
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