Fishing, Art is like waiting for a big fish.
Today, I completed a watercolor painting titled Fishing. In this painting, a large rocky mountain stands in the background. Yellow and orange rocky mountains are visible in layers. It is a bright day with the sun rising in the middle of the sky. Fishing on a day like this can be very arduous. In particular, fishing under a rocky mountain where there are no people, trees, or animals would be possible only in my imagination.
No professional angler would enjoy fishing with a small lone boat in such an environment. So I love to do imagination. And I enjoy realizing the imagined possibilities and scenes on paper. Paper is the window through which I can see the objects, scenes, and events I have drawn in my head.
So is drawing. Sometimes it seems like a small piece of boat is floating under a lonely rocky mountain and hanging on fishing for a long time. There is no life to be found around, and the sun is scorching hot in the center of our head. There is nothing in the world to depend on or to trust, but the fishing rod is our only friend. Fishing requires patience for a long time. And fishing should turn off all external noise and focus only on ourself and the fishing rod.
There is a painting called Fishing by Edouard Manet, a famous French Impressionist painter in the 19th century.
Edouard Manet’s painting, Fishing, is an in-depth piece that showcases the artists detail oriented technique progressing into impressionism. However, since this painting was painted at about the same time as Manet's famous work "Lunch on the Grass", it was criticized as an unfinished work or a failure among Manet's paintings.
But I personally like this piece. The couple in the picture is Manet and his fiancee, Susan Lan Hope. The man looked over his shoulders over the water covered in deep turquoise azure. Next to the couple stands a dark brown dog overlooking the water. There is a fishing boat on the water and there are three people inside, one sitting on the boat, the other pulling the net and the other pulling the spear to catch the fish.
People fishing on the boats seem to be doing some hard work. Because neither the gentleman sitting on the boat nor the couple watching are doing anything. Only the two men in the center of the picture are doing something. And the fisherman from afar appears to be sitting in another dimension. The energy of action is depicted differently in one picture.
What does the gray rainbow in the distance mean? Perhaps, what kind of code of hope did Manet want to imply in this picture? In fact, there is a theory that this painting alludes to Manet's wedding. Because of his father's objection to marrying the woman in the painting, he had to hide his fiancee. His father passed away before they were married, but Manet may have painted hints of his future in the painting.
Seeing Manet's fishing like this, I also drew another version of fishing. I added a large fish in the water where the woman fishing is not visible instead of the rainbow, which is the code of hope. The only reward in the arduous and tedious act of fishing, so the source of the joy, the magic that makes fishing so good that you can't get out of it once you fall in love with it, is probably when you catch a fish.
The pleasure of fishing is doubled when you catch a big fish unexpectedly and unintentionally after a long wait. And because of this expectation, it makes it possible to overcome the waiting for such a tedious and long-lasting task.
I think the picture is the same. It is difficult to even imagine the joy when a work turns out better than expected and expresses more than intended. Because of this strong reward and energy, I can overcome the slowness and stillness of painting time.
Painters know better than anyone the need for solitude. I know that if I don't entrust myself in solitude, I'll never get a proper work. Just as a fisherman stands alone by a quiet river or beach, avoiding people, the painter leaves the busy world to create a proper work and paints alone in the studio. In a way, fishers and painters have many similarities.
In this sense, the fishing I drew today is a story about an artist who catches fish. I like the energy this work gives, so I'm considering submitting it to the Night Heron Art Show. We will continue to post the submission process.
Myungja Anna Koh