In JK’s family, names are drawn to decide who is going to get a gift for whom. With only one person to think of a gift for, the pressure of thinking up those perfect ideas is eased and the budget is higher. Well, that’s the theory. The budget is easy to adjust. The perfect idea… well, that depends on whose name one draws!
This year JK drew the name of a person who has been supportive of his painting career and very perceptive of his artistic communication. This may have made his basic gift idea, a painting, easy, especially since he knew his of gift partner’s home colour scheme and plenty of open wall space. Even the subject of the piece was clear: the two had travelled together to Istanbul for a wonderful holiday so it was natural to capture that memory.
Oftentimes, however, it is most difficult to paint the most personal of paintings, especially when the idea is strong, clear and important. Add a deadline and the pressure is on! JK knew his colour would be Shadow Violet, his technique would begin with a pour, and he was going to use a full sheet of paper. After that, it was all a gamble as the paint was mixed, the paper saturated, and all was in readiness for whatever would happen with paint, water and gravity.
What a relief when the first pour came out beautifully! The detailed work came next, offering more control and direction from the artist: a different sort of stress, yet one fueled by initial success. Building the landscape by layers was a thoughtful process of composition and value adjustment. The Blue Mosque and the Hagia Sophia are highlighted by the landscape of JK’s own design.
When it was finished the piece was strong, grand, and had an air of ancient intrigue mixed with fresh circumstance and light. It was given a name to reflect all these things: Constantinople.
The receiver of this piece was well pleased of course. This was a fine gift indeed.