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Art Mediums & Materials
oil painting on canvas
24 in x 36 in / 60.96 cm x 91.44 cm
created from imagination
July to September 2020
The idea behind this art was very much inspired by the Roosevelt Island riverside walk in NYC, particularly the path beneath Queensboro Bridge. I was heavily visualising a cityscape along those lines during early to mid morning. Having never yet been to Roosevelt Island myself, I imagine ambling or running along that riverwalk or in a similar setting very refreshing, reinvigorating and exhilarating.
Reading Cassandra Clare’s 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐌𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐚𝐥 𝐈𝐧𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐮𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐬 series and watching the adapted TV show 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰𝐡𝐮𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐬—just being 𝙞𝙢𝙢𝙚𝙧𝙨𝙚𝙙 in the urban fantasy world—have made me fall all the more in love with marvellous modern cityscapes and all the adventurous cool stuff you could do there.
I was definitely thinking a lot of Brooklyn and Manhattan while creating this piece, and also using skylines such as Shanghai and Dubai as reference points for the buildings. And I’d always wanted to get a bit creative with the architecture of the bridge.
Moreover, I was having the music “Dead” by Madison Beer playing intensely in my head for some reason; I would hear it when I’m watching a girl jogging in that city or I’d imagine myself listening to it if I was the one running. It just felt very...freeing having the song playing to me during that particular setting in that particular time. Ideas and inspirations can be interestingly strange sometimes and they don’t always tend to make sense...but why feel they have to?
During the creating process, I actually spent hours trying to draw a shadow for the girl running, as the sun is shining directly behind her and I wanted the time of day to be early morning in the city. I hadn’t been able to achieve a foreshortening effect of her shadow like I’d desired, to show that the sunlight is quite vivid and intense along the grass and pathway, because I haven’t yet mastered the skill of accurately drawing foreshortened (human) shadows FROM MY HEAD!
Upon observing the girl’s shadow, it ended up looking contrived instead of belonging naturally to the setting. Also, if I wanted a shadow for her it would make sense to have shadows for all the other elements within the cityscape as well—e.g. white bench, bridge & grand buildings, etc.
So I just decided to forget about it, not include it, and erased the whole thing. It was worth a try and definitely took a lot of thinking and time, but sometimes during the process of creating things don’t always work out, and you got to reevaluate your intentions and ideas to figure out what’s best for you and your work.