I am working on a piece I'm going to submit for a show in which the theme is "Carbon." The idea is to represent carbon beyond the use of it as a material. I've done a couple paintings in a style that I immediately thought of when I heard of this show. So I am working on making that style represent carbon. Since both diamonds and graphite are forms of carbon, I am going to use white and black in my painting in order to represent those 2 materials.
I started by painting black over a piece I really wasn't happy with. It had a textured section you can see here - but that works out great for my vision. I'm picturing graphite as a rough cut chunk, both smooth and bumpy.
Now I'm adding some square-shaped brushstrokes in a seemingly random way. But wait! There's actually a method to my madness :) You see, the atomic number of carbon is 6. Therefore, all of the squares are painted in groups of 6. Also, as shown in the diagram here - its electrons are arranged in groupings of 2 and 4. So I painted each group of six with 4 squares that have black on the left side, and 2 squares that have white on the left side.
Done. Now I've added some glitter paint to all the white squares. They are supposed to be diamonds you know! The glitter is iridescent so it's reflecting a bit purple.
Break time! DaVinci, my one-eyed basset (bassyclops?), needs some attention.
After coating everything with 2 coats of glossy varnish, I randomly glued tiny Swarovski crystals onto several of the white "diamond" squares. These add lovely little sparkles when they catch the light just right, but are almost invisible otherwise. Kinda cool. Might leave people wondering where the sparkles are coming from.
Unfortunately, my camera is having a lot of trouble capturing the sparkles. But they are definitely visible to the naked eye.