Smear by Mayank Chhaya
I don’t think what I do qualifies as painting. It sure involves a lot of paint. It also involves a lot of mixing and stroking, smudging and sponging.
On the other hand, there is no brick and mortar painter’s studio. There are no brushes whose bristles are hardened by dried and congealed paint. There is no painter’s apron smeared with random colors. There is no easel. And there are no unevenly squeezed paint tubes strewn around the floor. What I do is rather disturbingly sanitized because it is all done digitally using the free online tool Pixlr.
The ease of use that the Pixlr tool provides has allowed me the freedom to be prolific. Prolific is not necessarily good but it suggests a hyperactive visual mind. How hyperactive and visual became clear only this morning when I was looking at these six works together. These were created in the last five days, averaging about seven minutes of my time in the morning. There are four more which I have not included here. Ten “paintings” in five days in a total of about 70 minutes have to qualify as prolific. If I don’t watch out, I may become the late Thomas Kinkade of useless art.
It is not for me to judge the artistic merit of these works, although I seriously doubt if they have any. However, going by the number of “Likes” on Facebook I can at least say that friends do not find them ridiculous. Two in particular, ‘Primal’ and ‘Smudge’ seem to have been greatly appreciated. Incidentally, the name of the paintings do not mean anything. I name them because while saving the files I have to label them. More often than not these labels represent a specific feeling that I may have had at the time.
I am in the process of creating a website aimed at commercializing my artwork. I do want to sell them because money is always in short supply. There is no great artistic plan or thought behind these artworks. My only guiding principle is that they should be visually interesting. Just as any piece of writing should strive to be at least marginally readable, any piece of visual art should strive to be visually interesting. I hope some of these are.
All of these have my signature in the form of the Gujarati letter મ as in my name.