James Faure Walker: Figures in a Landscape

  • ©2002, James Faure Walker



    Figures in a Landscape


Creation Year:



    Giclée iris print


    32 in x 36 in


Artist Statement:

    Lately, I have been thinking more and more about drawing, and some of these ideas are becoming part of the work I make. I draw the same motif (a tree, a chair) switching between a brush and a Wacom tablet, and play around with the differences. For someone like me, who has both a painting studio and a digital studio, drawing with line is one of the options that bridge the gap between media. I still don’t know the right term to use, because though I usually end up with a giclée iris print, I do not feel I am a digital printmaker, a computer artist, or a digital painter. If I identify this work as “drawing,” and my larger paintings, which use similar techniques, as “drawn paintings,” then I am getting closer. What excites me is the continuing convergence between painting, photography, and the digital. The processes, techniques, and, of course, software can be so rich and surprising I sometimes feel like standing back and letting the pictures make themselves without any interference from me.

    I have been using prefabricated components, sections of cardboard that I paint and build into temporary constructions before photographing. When I reassemble these drawings, which are overlaid with digital drawing, I may introduce quite arbitrarily an unrelated photo, a street scene. This may hold the attention and subordinate the rest of the picture, but it can also lift the mood of a picture and activate latent contrasts.

    Figures in a Landscape is the title of a picture that used a much larger (12 feet x 10 feet) initial study as a ground, which consisted of motifs developed from small doodles, derived from an evening spent at a flower-arranging demonstration (I was the only male there, but got through my embarrassment by realising the dandified geometry/botany had possibilities for the digital artist). I tried several ways to resolve this in its digital stage, but one night I recalled that I never quite made proper use of one of the hundreds of photos I had recently taken in Japan. The couples with the umbrella are in Kyoto, and there could be some small affinity between the wetness of the paint and the rain.