An Artist’s Process

Tracy-Lynn Chernaske
June 13,2020

Stumble 2019
Stumble 2019
Lyra Portrait
An Artist's Process
River & Treeline 2018
River and Treeline

Hello Knox submitted by Tracy-Lynn Chernaske  

     Hello! I thought I’d take a minute and explain a bit more about some of the “other part” of my work life. I am a scenic artist for theatre as well as a fine art painter and I thought it may be interesting to share a glimpse into my work style when it comes to my fine art, specifically abstract.

     Above, in the photo section, are some examples of my work from over the last couple years. My work ranges from abstracts with nature-based ideology to working on portraits and commissions where the subject is dictated by my clients. I tend to shift in styles between painterly, impressionistic, and graphic – I like to be able to alter those styles and work in between to suit the need or mood for each piece.

     I work mainly with acrylic paints – sometimes mixed with inks or watercolours – on paper, canvas or wood. I prefer to work in many short sessions where I bounce between two or three different projects at a time. My pieces take anywhere from 3-6 weeks to complete depending on size, subject, style and materials. I prefer working on large scale pieces but have started working on smaller pieces over the last six months or so as I mainly work from a tiny studio space in my apartment where painting is a form of meditation and reflection.

     My favorite part about painting abstracts is also the most frustrating. You’ll often hear of artists talk about “the ugly stage” or the “teenage stage” of a painting – this is the point, usually some point near the middle of the process, where it feels that you as the creator have lost the sense or point of the work or gotten off track – usually it is also the most literal visually ugly point of a painting as well. I love hitting this stage most of all because the uphill climb out of this stage is the most rewarding. 

     Since self-isolation started a couple of months ago, I have been working on a variety of projects including personal abstract projects, commissions and even a portrait of a friend’s child. You may be wondering “why abstracts?”. I think it often comes down to the fact that I really enjoy the ambiguity of them. I spend a lot of time as a person observing the world around me and often words are the toughest way for me to express. With abstracts, I don’t necessarily need words. I enjoy hearing other people’s ideas about my work. Something that sparks a conversation is always the best compliment. The video below is a speed paint (sped-up recording) of one of my newer abstracts “Inflorescence”. 

     I was reflecting on the world state at the height of COVID-19 and the idea that many animals were starting to re-inhabit spaces that they had previously been avoiding. Starting with a circular base brought up images of the physical world as well as the idea of going “full circle” and “cycle of life”. Inflorescence is a term used in botany to describe the arrangement of flowers on an axis, a flower cluster; a flowering or blossoming. When I came across this word, I felt it couldn’t be a better representation of this painting.

     To see further examples of my work as well as my theatre work please feel free to stop by my online portfolio – here.

     Now I am curious about your creative pursuits – do you paint, sculpt or craft? Use the CONTACT US button to tell us about your creative endeavours.