Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Heather Canvas

I got comissioned to create a canvas piece which was to be given as a graduation present to the receiver. Her name (the one receiving the gift) is Heather. And the friend that's giving it to her... well, I suppose there's a reason why he liked the Orange-Red Mahal poster.

Heather in Baybayin could be translated in several ways:
He-Te-L
He-T-He-L
He-Te


I opted for the first, "He-Te-L", as three characters would give the canvas piece symmetry. I then inquired to the gift-giver some descriptions of the woman he was giving the gift to, and he gave me the following adjectives:
►Strength
►Beauty
►Grace
►Intellect
►Inspiration
►Passion
►Boundless
►Love
►Resilience
►Happiness
►Dance
►Classic
►Naturalicious (a nickname, pretty interested to see if and how you translate that)
►Blessing
►Greatness
►Unbreakable
►Favorite
How sweet.

So, after some conceptualizing, I took these adjectives and translated these words, which would then be used to fill in the Heather characters as if it were these words completed his idea of who and what she is. I would do a quick draft on paper and send it to him to see if he was fine with this direction. He was.

Heather Concept

So after I got the go-ahead, it was time to translate this piece into the 12" x 36" canvas. Using oil, acrylic and spray paint, I began. Some artists use wood palettes. Others use little plastic ones. I use cardboard.

Painting Palette

The base is a winding of ambers and oranges, which represent the clash and conflict of both platonic and a more intimate love for a friend. Weaving in and out of the canvas are the descriptive words written in Baybayin that describe her. Then, to create contrast for the characters, I stenciled the He-Te-L characters in a dark red, which would bring forth the visibility of the characteristics that make up the name. Lastly, in a dark shade of jade-green, the words that describe Heather are used to comprise and give form to her name. This is how he sees her, and this is how she is seen by him.

The Heather Canvas layers

The Heather Canvas

Detail shots

The Heather Canvas close2

The Heather Canvas close1

Typography is the art of type... what about the art of character writing? In Baybayin? Bay-ography?

I hope Heather enjoys the piece. From my understanding, she's an art history major that enjoys seeing a slice of different cultures. What better gift than a canvas piece that's a reflection of how one lovingly sees you, written in a cultured script? Heather, if you're reading this, understand that through making this painting, I was diving into the emotion being driven into this painting to express what I feel how he feels for you. I hope you realize the impact you have made on the man's life.

Stay up.

~cyph
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2 comments:

SSJxGojita said...

Great artwork!
But the "encoding" is way off the mark.

there --> "der"
this --> "dis"
the police --> "da pulis"

... so, "Heather" should have been "he-de-r", or as you preferred, "he-de-l".

David Lazaro (cyph) said...

TH is a funny thing. You could do "der" for "there" and "dis" for "this", but in reference to how the Ancient Filipinos translated TH (As is the case for the word, Bathala), they would use either Ta or Ha (So, Bathala could be translated as either Batala, or the more prolific version, BAHALA).

But thank you for your input.

~cyph