Douglas Comstock

Douglas Comstock

I’ve been creating artwork ever since I can remember, spending many years painting landscapes, portraits and flowers. I earned a living as a graphic artist and signpainter for over 50 years, learning my craft on the fly without benefit of professional instruction. The last 20 years have been dedicated mostly to computer graphics and that is why I think I am fascinated by the textural effects that are available in the acrylic medium. And after a lifetime of struggle with representation of people, landscape and years as a silk screen artist, I’m delighted by the urgency and freedom of paint and other mediums and what happens when they meet on the canvas itself.

The last few years I’m grateful that the abstract range has enticed me to return to painting, and while I found figure, flowers and still life rewarding, I am especially intrigued by the textural qualities that give depth to a painted surface. I have found the non-figurative more compelling. I try to let the beauty of the medium itself speak through, letting pigment be pigment. Finding or searching for it’s own beauty is sufficiently gratifying, and watching it interact with itself and other elements is humbling to be a part of, and it’s fun.

I remain fascinated by the ability of painted surfaces to engage with other people and evoke a mood in ways that do not reflect the realistic portrayal of the world. Relying on colors: cool and warm, contrasts: stark and soft, depth, definition and direction and, of course, texture, I hope to interest the viewer as I did as a signpainter. While abstract colors and shapes do not convey the specific meanings that signs and graphics do, the mood and spirit are reflected by the way colors work with or against each other and play together.

I proceed through a painting without a preconceived idea, and give the unexpected and chance a major role. Of course it is impossible to completely withdraw from the process, but my intent is to remain behind the scene and limit myself to determining what works, always attempting to avoid the contrived while searching for new, unique forms, shapes and textural effects. While competing aspects of a painting present themselves, I attempt to resolve the tension or lack of it in a way that evokes a feeling. My goal is to connect with the viewer, but ultimately it is to find satisfaction with my work.