Depicting the Details by Matt Tomko
That style continues to feed my soul in a very deep way and I try to elicit that same feeling of awe and appreciation for details from the people who view these pieces. “Cardinals and Dogwoods”, 12” x 16” is just that kind of piece.
Tiny feathers, the highlights in an eye, or the stamens in a flower are all there. For one who enjoys seeing things up close, this piece offers those rewards.
In the past, my need to “get out of the box” has sometimes led to a twist on boxes as in a series painted for the Golden Belt Artists’ annual 12×12 show. “Bull City Pride” from this series is a good example of me both literally and figuratively breaking out. Each painting featured a brightly rendered background treated as a screen with a square window. In the window you see the subject realistically while through the screen you see only shadow.
At other times I find the need to paint in an even looser style with broader brush strokes and less reliance on being true to life while relying more on the movement and colors to trigger a response from the viewer.
This recent rendering of a dragonfly, 11” x 14”, was done in a more graphic style where I played up the color, size and lines. Colors are more vibrant, lines are more exaggerated and the dragonfly itself is many times larger than real life.
Occasionally, I can tolerate no boundaries and just feel the need to paint color and lines and shapes alone, as evident in this set of “Organic Blue Abstracts” in the center of a wall filled with realism. I find that even my abstract pieces have a very natural and earthy feel to them.
After playing and experimenting in the other realms, I suspect I’ll always return to realism, but hopefully with new knowledge picked up along the way. You can see my work in Studio 123 during the open studios night at Golden Belt in Durham every third Friday of the month. You can also find me at Lazy Daze in Cary in August and Centerfest in Durham in September.