It was March and I was just starting Ito paint a new work. The project was ready, and it was time to start to draw on the canvas and then paint. Meanwhile, something that has been gaining momentum had just reached my country of Poland. Overnight everything changed. This influenced my work and my painting started to change too.
I paint what I feel. Everything that surrounds me has an influence on my projects, feelings, and thoughts. Even what music I listen can have an impact on the painting.
The pandemic found me in my small apartment where I had just built my minimalist art studio. In that 3-square meters, I gathered everything I needed to create. Isolation was continuing, the world was changing, my painting was changing with everything. While working, I slowly rejected any unnecessary additions to the project, looking for the essence, looking for a base, a safe zone from which we could always draw strength, no matter of my surroundings.
All of my paintings are about internal strength—this is something that’s always on my mind, and as a result, it unites all my paintings. This time, I also wanted to share something positive with the recipient, give encouragement and pay it forward. I was looking for a point from which we all can draw strength. I was seeking universal comforting.
In this demonstration, I focused on showing two aspects of my work: layers and color. I’ve always loved colors and I’ve seen more of them than others. While painting, my thinking about color is combined with an unusual approach to working in layers. There is no magic way to find the right tone; you can’t prepare a specific tone in advance, or at least that kind of work is not for me. Every time I paint I look for each specific tone and the smallest shade differences because I care about color diversity a lot and I believe that color should be different in every centimeter of the work. That is why I paint very slowly and I move square by square so I do not lose any color. My goal is to find a different tone in every fragment, even on the seemingly flat surface.
By adding a large number of layers, I build detail, color diversity, and finally harmony. Some layers are glazed and in others, I apply an opaque but I do not repaint the whole; I improve more and more—I paint thinly. I add details, and I sharpen and harmonize shades. I change the tone slightly. I add a skin structure. All this grows like a snowball with each subsequent layer. The last layer contains a lot of “thinking,” and the result is sometimes reduced to just a few touches with a brush, but that changes the accents and quality of the whole. I like when the colors influence each other; they are reflected and they change the tone depending on what is next to them.
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