Through Concentrated Breath

making images from memory

Drawing and Painting: A Personal Definition

14 October 2017 by Rey Armenteros

I draw with paint. Though everyone of my pictures from recent years would be classified as a painting, I feel they are mostly drawings in disguise.

A drawing is immediate with little planning. It is a one-sitting enterprise, and the more you deliberate over it, the closer it comes to becoming a painting. A drawing is linear, and it is monochromatic, but it can evolve from there and still be loyal to its upbringing.
A drawing is done with solid colors; there is little subtlety. Titanium White is corporeal in paint mixtures and Zinc White is not; therefore when I use Titanium White, I am drawing, and when I use Zinc White, I am painting. Drawing is like writing. Painting is the propensity to use the surface to make something of it; the skin of a painted portrait could be an actual skin of paint, and the feel of these surfaces connote to the surfaces of other things.

Nevertheless, painting can be ethereal, and drawing is hardly ever ethereal, unless it is alluding to it in some abstract way.

And that is another thing: drawing is provoking a literal reality using the most abstract of devices (namely line and the lack of color), whereas painting is pure abstraction, even if it represents something and even if it does it convincingly.

So, if I begin with abstract clouds in order to get something out of it eventually, I am painting regardless of the tools I am using. If I know what I want to depict, I am drawing.
A calligraphic mark makes me think of drawing. A haze is beyond question an aspect of painting.

When I sit in the studio and am making one or the other, I am always using acrylic paints, and I don’t think about whether I’m making a drawing or a painting. The distinctions come later when I am analyzing the way I go about doing things, when the act of drawing or painting is over.

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