March 28, 2008

"Victorian Nautilus Shell"

Oil on archival, museum quality, 1/8” Ampersand Gessobord™ panel – 5" x 7"

Ah, the Nautilus! I’ve been told that I have the body of a God. Sadly the God they had in mind was Buddha. In a fit of madness, I bought a home Nautilus machine to try to change that perception. Anyone who knows me well knows I wouldn’t run out of a burning house, much less jog, so this purchase was ill-fated from the start. As you can guess, it did yeoman’s duty as a clothes hanger before I finally found it a good home with a health conscience friend. Suffice it to say, I am content to look like Balzac for the time being. My other anomaly is that although I loathe boats, I have a fascination for submarines. When I was a lad in grade school, I had a Nautilus lunch box. The Nautilus was our first nuclear attack sub, launched in 1954. It was also Captain Nemo’s ship in Jules Verne’s tale 20,000 Leagues under the Sea. I have never been on a sub under sea although I have been on the USS Torsk which arrived in Baltimore to serve as a museum and memorial in 1972. So there it is...more insight into this artist.


rick nilson said...

Very Victorian. Here on the Outer Banks we use oyster knives to mix paint. I guess that hasn't caught on in Maryland yet. Try it but be sure to wear a glove. Seriously though, very victorian.

Diane said...

I love the way the shell glows and the detail on the stand is lovely.

Joanne said...

Hi Mark,
There are several things about this painting which stand out and show the mastery of your painting. The first is the absolute evenness and darkness of your background. Another is the treatment of the metal stand, and the subtleties of the rich tones in the base. Then there is the shell - the clean edges, the combination of colors, and the beauty of the light and colors which glow, even in a photo. So, when do your workshops begin, Mr. Adams? Seriously, Mark - you inspire me to continue painting even on the "bad" days.
How is your Uncle Bob doing?

Mark Adams said...

Thanks Joanne!

What looks like a black background is actually a complex combination of ivory black, alizarin crimson, Venetian red and Vandyke brown. This gives a richness and depth to the background that you can sink your hand in up to your elbow. The subtle reds play off the verdigris of the stand and the warmth of the shell. See…nothing to it.

Uncle Bob is rallying but not out of the woods yet. Thanks for asking.