My painting Mars Earth Merge is not so directly influenced by outside images but more by my observations of some surfaces on Earth.
Keel Beach in Achill Island is one of my favourite places to walk, its six kilometres long, with a constant roar from the Atlantic breakers.
I enjoy taking macro images of the sand, and love observing how the sea makes channels in its softness as it retreats. Often the markings are delta shaped, water etched, well defined, but delicate. On Keel sometimes the wind whips up dry sand and sends it at great speed to wrap itself around rocks on wet sand. It’s nice to watch, but very difficult to photograph.
This painting started as a depiction of those sand deltas on Keel. As it developed I had the idea to use Martian colours often associated with false colour MRO HiRise Images. I used pallet knives to merge Earth style water erosion on a beach scale with long gone water erosion on Mars which was on a larger scale.
I further developed the link by adding a beach stone and lots of sand in layers on each side of the Mars / Earth delta. Unfortunately for me the sand I used was too perfect and I had to enhance it by introducing particles of pastel in yellow, and orange to give it some depth. The addition of a little seaweed gave a 3 D property to the work.
In hindsight this painting has taken several years to complete as my influencing walk was actually on January 1st 2009. A bitterly cold day with strong winds and huge waves, it was totally exhilarating. I started to paint this canvas several months ago.
Here are a few images from that trip that led to my painting and a video of the waves on Keel beach. Although unintentional on my part it has been said to me, that my painting reminds some people of images taken of Mars from orbit .
28 inches X 22 inches Acrylics, Pastel, Rock , Sand and Seaweed on canvas.