I sold my very first painting over the weekend!
It was Astronaut.
All my artwork comes with a handwritten card detailing materials, year, inspiration, etc. which was interesting to read again now (I wrote it a while ago/when the painting was finished 2010). So, I’ve decided to share my “insight” into “Astronaut” and my painting.
Astronaut is based on the Amanda Palmer song of the same title:
I found this photograph while mindlessly internet browsing and tucked it away into one of my many computer files for later use. It wasn’t until the release of the “Who Killed Amanda Palmer?” album that I thought about it again.
The song, for me, is about a love that is hauntingly out of reach; whether that is an unrequited love, an emotionally distant lover, or a dead love. However, all Amanda Palmer songs have more than one meaning, and many different trains of thought. In her blogs Amanda talks about a relationship she had with an artist who drifted away from her, one line “I want to touch the back of your right arm” directly relates to this: she drew a picture of a tattoo on his right arm and this is the only thing she has left to remember him/his love by. She also talks about the feelings of the wives of the Space Shuttle Columbia’s husbands and how they were able to cope with their horrific loss.
This photograph ^ encapsulates the song for me (even although it was taken before the song was written). In the original she is looking up inside a room towards where you would a imagine a window or skylight to be, but I wanted to surround her by and empty blackness. The piece of wood that I used to paint this on was taken from a bundle that my Dad brought home from one of his many projects to burn in our cozy little fireplace, but I saved this bit from the flames. It was a lovely surface for the oil paints. I was originally going to sand down the edges to give it a smooth finish but I preferred it in it’s natural state; the rough and smooth together seemed to fit into the song much better. The image of Amanda, alone in the blackness captures the heartbreaking loneliness holding the telescope up into the sky as the only thin hope that sufferers of loss cling to, the longing for the return of their love.