You cannot get a grip on blue.
Blue is the sky, the sea, a god’s eye, a devil’s tail, a birth, a strangulation, a virgin’s cloak, a monkey’s ass. It’s a butterfly, a bird, a spicy joke, the saddest song, the brightest day.
Blue is sly, slick, it slides into the room sideways, a slippery trickster.
This is a story about the color blue, and like blue, there’s nothing true about it. Blue is beauty, not truth. ‘True blue’ is a ruse, a rhyme; it’s there, then it’s not. Blue is a deeply sneaky color.
― Christopher Moore,
He’s right, blue is a deeply tricky color.
Even looking now at the new painting above on this screen, an 8″ by 8″ panel that I call In a Blue Place, I can’t be sure that it is the same blue that I see when I look at the actual painting. And that change of hue can alter the reality of the painting, the feeling that comes from it.
Each person sees blue in a different way, some absorbing the overall tone of it while others latch on to the subtler tones within it. If I say blue the blue that might spring to your mind may be so much different than the one I am trying to describe that they might be entirely different colors.
As Moore says: How do you know, when you think blue — when you say blue — that you are talking about the same blue as anyone else?
It can mean and be so many different things. And maybe this multiplicity is the basis in the lure of blue for me.
Blue is also tricky to properly capture in an image. A painting like this particular piece is a nightmare to edit for me with all of its varying blues and tones and darknesses. I know that the image that you’re looking at is not the same one that I am looking at beside me at this moment.
The one on the screen took me about an hour of editing to get to the point where on the screen it is only a mile away from the original. I like it on the screen now but it is still a pale facsimile to the real thing. There are whole hues of blue that aren’t showing in this image above and I’m not sure if I will ever be able to proplerly capture them.
I like that elusiveness, that slippery quality that comes with blue. Yes, it is a color filled with meaning and emotion but it doesn’t want to be contained. And that is the thrill of working with it.
And that I will continue to do.