New Work: A Tornado Seen from Below

"Tornado From Below" Encaustic on Masonite 8″ x 10″ © 2007 Marilyn Fenn
“Tornado From Below” Encaustic on Masonite 8″ x 10″ © 2007 Marilyn Fenn

I’m not sure where I found the image for this painting, and I really can’t imagine anyone being brave or crazy enough to stand under a tornado and take a photograph.

But it’s a fascinating image, and here’s my take on it.  I love how this painting, like the one I did just before this, straddles that space between abstraction and representation.

New Work: Encaustic Tornado Painting

"Tornado - Ames, IA - March 30, 2006" Encaustic on Masonite 8″ x 10″ © 2007 Marilyn Fenn
“Tornado – Ames, IA – March 30, 2006” Encaustic on Masonite 8″ x 10″ © 2007 Marilyn Fenn

It felt so good to see my little tornado paintings in the AVAA show, and I’ve always intended to keep painting them until…whenever. So, here’s my first tornado painting in a while; I had started it months ago, but it was too ‘happy,’ so today I took it in a dramatically different direction.

Unlike the abstract encaustic paintings, these semi-representational paintings really require a delicate balance. Because it had been a while since I painted like this in encaustic, my tendency was to let it achieve painting-hood as soon as possible, with as little reworking for the sake of ‘perfecting’ the image as possible. So, for me, the great joy in these first few paintings, when I’m a bit rusty and unsure of my process, is how they sort of straddle the line between abstraction and representation.

After all, they are paint first, and images of tornadoes second.

For a bit of background on the encaustic process, read this previous post on how to paint in encaustic.