My Abstract Art

Stage 3 Abstract Painting
Stage 3 Abstract Painting

This piece of Abstract Art was originally a canvas which I used as part of an A-Level project and decided to paint over, reinventing it. Unfortunately I don’t have a photograph of the original to share with you, but in my opinion, it was pretty awful! The background was black and there were two self-portrait paintings in bright colours. There was no detail in the portraits, it was mainly bold colour and shapes to represent the face. The inspiration from this was a series of screen prints I had recreated in the style of  Andy Warhol, previous to the painting.

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Stage One

Materials used include – existing box canvas, acrylic paint, a variety of brushes, sponges, and scrapers. I decided to run with the already dark black background of the canvas and worked to initially mask the self-portrait paintings. You can still slightly see the outlines of the portraits on the left and right side of the canvas. I opted to use vibrant colours such as magenta, yellow and teal to start off with using a scraper to merge the colours across the canvas.

Stage 1 Abstract Painting
Stage 1 Abstract Painting

Stage Two

After this stage, I decided to lighten up the painting and also introduce some different techniques and shapes by using alternative tools such as square and rounded sponges. Sticking with the magenta, yellow and teal but adding white to create a soft pastel.

Stage 2 Abstract Painting
Stage 2 Abstract Painting

Stage three

Lastly, I guess I was missing the dark moodiness I had initially felt was present in the early stages so started to work that through again, weaving it between the pastel sponge, bright scrape marks and dark background of the original.

Stage 3 Abstract Painting
Stage 3 Abstract Painting

I’m happy with the end result. Although at the time was unaware of the benefits of using varnishes to seal the paintings. At present, some of the original portrait paint underneath the abstract work has started to curl up. The painting was situated in my old kitchen. Due to it not being sealed, the heat and moisture has had an effect on the canvas. Since moving back home it’s currently in storage but I would like to fix this issue in the future.

Future work

My next projects will be working on the varnishing element of abstract painting to preserve my work more professionally. As well as perhaps using other acrylic mediums. I also plan to work on some abstract pieces, using my life drawings as inspiration. You can find, my sketches and the full blog post ‘Life drawing class what to expect’ here.

I would welcome any advice or useful tips or blogs to follow. If you’d like to learn more about abstract art, check out some of these well-known artists as a starting point – Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Bridget Riley and Piet Mondrian.


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[…] some insight into the processes of my artwork. Following on from my previous artwork, featured in My Abstract Art there was quite a large gap of several years, in producing any further large abstract works, until […]