Movement and scale
Michael C Hayes uses movement and scale to evoke a sense of awe in a familiar subject
Michael C Hayes’ angelic work.
Angels are a recurring theme in my work. This is certainly not the first, second or even 10th time I’ve taken on this subject, nor am I by any means the first artist in history to do so. Because it’s such a familiar subject, the challenge of engaging my audience is even bigger, due to their potential apathy.
I have to prove to them, in a split second, that they should care about this painting of an angel. I have to make it more than just the sum of its parts. Bearing this in mind, I set out to evoke awe, by making the painting really be about scale and movement. The angel will become merely the vehicle by which I portray these concepts.
From the very beginning I know that I want to suggest scale by having the angel’s wings envelope the entire frame and have her emerging from an atmospheric mist. I also think about how I could suggest movement with strong diagonals in the composition, an acrobatic gesture and secondary elements such as trailing hair and fabric.
After several years as a freelance artist Michael C Hayes now paints entirely for himself. www.artofmike.com
Radiating line composition This entire composition is built from arcing lines that radiate from the bottom-left corner of the image. Note how the gesture of the figure, the flight patterns of the birds, and even the feathers of angel’s wings bow towards that single point. Atmospheric perspective After painting the first layers with Galkyd Lite, I layed down a semi-transparent glaze of Gamblin Neo-Megilp and transparent white which blended into a transparent earth tone glaze. While that layer was still wet I worked into it with opaque paints.