The Seven Training Sketches

Like soul landscapes, these nature mood works express something of how nature is experienced in the inner life of the artist. Using acrylic, watercolour, or pastel, something of the hidden forces of nature are revealed through these works. Some, like the acrylics on card, are quite small; the watercolours range from approx. 30x40cm to 55x95cm. 

The works are based on the Seven Training Sketches for the Painter. The Seven series are also called the Friedwart sketches, as they were given to the teachers in an early Steiner school at the Goetheanum, in order to develop the students’ feeling for nature’s moods. A favourite motif of mine is ‘Sunlit tree by a waterfall’, seen here in watercolour on white and black backgrounds, in pastel and as a mural in a living room.

Other sketches in the Seven series include a sunrise/sunset, two trees sketches, a head sketch and a Madonna sketch, the basis of my ‘reinterpreted’ ikons seen here.

Here are two more interpretations of sketches from the Seven series.

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There are also the Nine Training Sketches, that focus on bringing the artist to an understanding of the objective but invisible laws of Nature, through exploring the processes in nature rather than the moods. Both series form a part of an ongoing research process that trains the soul ‘configuration’ of the artist through their repeated practice, through immersion into the themes again and again, using different mediums and techniques.

Below are two works from the Nine series: Sunrise II and Summer Trees. The rest of the series can be viewed here.

Although these motifs reflect the inner moods and processes of Nature, it is impossible not to imbue them with something of the soul mood of the environment in which the artist lives, in this case the Australian landscape. For this reason, I like to use watercolours or pastels that have been particularly developed to reflect the colours of the Australian landscape. My favourite Pilbara Red (Art Spectrum range) can been seen in most of these works.

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