Face No.5: Vulnerable

Since closing down Better, I have finally found time to go back to my Faces series. To see the start of the series, click here for Face 1, Face 2, Face 3 and Face 4. This series explores men’s faces using colour to sculpt the contours and reflect emotion.

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This painting turned out looking vulnerable, some combination perhaps of the exaggeratedly large eyes, the relaxed mouth or the neutral expression. The young man is quietly self-possessed, but open; not defensive.

This painting combines my favourite colours – yellow, pink and gold (not so visible in the photo) – grounded with sienna shades.

Face No.5: Vulnerable is painted in acrylic paint on a 50cm x 50cm stretched canvas and finished in gloss acrylic canvas. It is not framed.

Mandala No.15: Focus

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Mandala No.15: Focus by Judy Backhouse (copyright)

Focus is about aligning your thoughts, actions and energy. You start out wide, but narrow down, getting closer and closer to a single point. So Focus is based on a spiral, moving inwards towards that focal point in the centre.

The alignment is represented by fish; first milling about aimlessly, but gradually turning until they all head in the same direction. Even in the background, the flowers align on the grass in sympathy.

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I tried hanging Focus in different ways. Hung square, the beautiful sweep of the spiral is clearer, but the dominance of the pink area makes the painting look unbalanced to me. So I tried hanging it diagonally and rather liked the result.

Focus is painted in acrylic paint on a 50cm x 50cm gallery-wrapped canvas and is finished with matt acrylic varnish. The image continues over the edge as shown below. It is signed on the back and ready to hang.

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Mandala No.10: Harmony

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Mandala No.10: Harmony by Judy Backhouse (copyright)

Harmony reflects my favourite colours – pinks, lilacs and mauves, with touches of deep purple. I love the way these colours interact and here I have experimented with them alone and mixed. I find the interactions between these colours epitomise harmony.

The shifts in colour as well as the repeated lines create a vibration in this picture, that reminds me of the vibrations of sound. For me its like a standing wave pattern that has been set up on the canvas. I can hear it singing to me. It’s not a simple sound – there is complexity in the multiple layers and patterns.

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Standing waves create the harmony

Harmony is painted in acrylic on a gallery-wrapped canvas slightly bigger than my other mandalas at 60cm x 60cm. The sides of the canvase are painted pink and it is finished with matt acrylic varnish. The picture is ready to hang.

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Detail showing the edge of the canvas