Invitation to Play 5

invitation to play

Well my friends, as Robert suggested I have captained the ship and tonight I bring it into its final dock…

Invitation 5

…and I am surprised as anyone with the results. I have been laughing all the way through the final stages. The Joker Muse was certainly present as I fine tuned our painting.

I began by adding Steven’s suggestion of  scales on the mermaid-like figure on the right. Then I enhanced the small face at top left a little – Marina’s suggestion. Neither of these details are easy to see even when you click to enlarge. I also enhanced the face and upper torso of the ‘mermaid.’ I did this very intuitively and was amused at her expression and her ending up with three breasts. Enter Joker Muse.

All that remained was resolving the mystery of the central green area. I saw nothing I could expand on despite your evocative suggestions. As I often do in such a situation I layered, with darker and lighter, swirled in some lines, always ‘listening’ visually  to what the painting was saying to me. Suddenly the face you see appeared. I accepted it and went with it although its humour was the last thing I expected. I added ‘scales’ to the left side, fish-like protuberance from the head to connect to the ‘mermaid’s’ scales, also difficult to see on screen. The humorous, lustful look of the green face toward the ‘mermaid’ was never planned, just happened…the influence of the Joker Muse. So there it is, and who am I to judge what the painting wants to be?

No doubt, this process could continue, but as captain I am saying we are home, with laughter and relief that ‘all’s well that ends well.’ Nothing wrong with a touch of humour in art even though more profound results were anticipated.

I thank you all sincerely for your wonderful and willing participation in this ‘Invitation to Play’ series…it has been a fun and rewarding experience for me and I hope it has been also for you.

I am ending with a brief  gallery showing the process of this communal painting from beginning to end:

For the concept behind this challenge please see ‘Invitation to Play 1’.

The ‘Invitation to Play‘ painting is a found image photographed in a local park in East Vancouver. I don’t know the artist but will credit you if you contact me. I thank you for inspiring the title for this post.

21 thoughts on “Invitation to Play 5

  1. Hi John, the final result is absolutely stunning! I love the colours, the image, the strong shapes and the face in the bird 🙂 It reminds me of Karel Appel. And I am so proud I was a little part of it all!


  2. John you may have been anticipating more profound results……..but that is the only thing you got wrong.
    The result is profound and deeply moving……… a real credit to you and your bloggers. Such a wonderful insight into the creative process. An outstanding series of posts which only you could bring together. EXCELLENT!


    1. Robert, your words mean a lot to me. You have been a constant participant in this from the beginning and I thank you for that. If you feel it works I am satisfied. It was fun and it was a learning, what else can we expect? Thank you my friend for your support…


  3. Love the process you embarked upon and your result. Very mythological… I see intimations of ” green man” & ‘Undine…’ I wonder what you felt you were tapping into as you worked away interpreting various thoughts sent your way….


    1. Thank you Steven, I’ve really enjoyed your perceptions and participation in this project…’green man’ and ‘Undine’ never occurred to me but now you have introduced a mythological context I understand the painting in another and maybe deeper way than before…if I am ever tempted to rework it in the future, your reading will certainly be an influence. As to your wondering…not an easy one to answer… a new and refreshing experience for me, to ‘channel’ visual ideas from others into my creative flow…as I’ve mentioned before it was freeing in many ways and at the same time I felt a strong sense of wanting to apply those ideas in ways that would please each participant…like mini-commissions. So not working for myself this time but ‘tapping into’ a group mind…taking individual fragments and making them into a whole. I do know that, after this communal experience, when I set out on my next painting journey I will be acutely aware that I am once again a solo traveler.


  4. Wonderful ! I like all the serpentine shapes and surfaces, the interrupted spirals that have evolved. The circular blue image reminds me of the mythological Griffin..sans wings.
    But drat! I was looking forward to following along but didn’t realize I hadn’t clicked the “follow” button and thinking you’d gone DEEP in process somewhere when your post didn’t show up in my reader. Well …I think the experiment here is stellar and I’m glad to have caught up with everyone. Love your experimental spirit, John.


    1. Thank you for visiting these posts Lesley and for your comment. Happy you enjoyed the process…I’m sure any input you might have had would have been very interesting…


  5. Ah, see what I miss when avoiding online? Well done… enjoyed reading the comments and suggestions as well as seeing the painting evolve.


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