The Art of Veil Painting — “The Artist as Singer”

Veil painting is a meditative art form based on the work of Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, esotericist and developer of the Waldorf education system, Rudolf Steiner. He believed in the healing qualities of colour, the nature of this colour “therapy” being to stimulate different emotional responses for each individual.

In veil painting, watercolours are thinned to a very light value and wet colours are applied one at a time only over dry colours.

With no preconceived idea of the final result, the artist patiently layers “veils” of colour one over another in varying patterns, never repeating exactly the same shapes in the same place. Ultimately the veils of colour will reveal an image or motif which the artist may then bring more into consciousness.

I took up veil painting several years ago during art therapy and fell in love with it. I loved its mystery which reminded me of my fondness for the semi-precious stone, Labradorite. At first glance the stone looks grey, but move it about under the light and it comes to life as a miracle of colour.

And so it is with veil painting. At first glance it looks to be only a mess of colour, but as one meditates upon it the shapes and patterns and colours start to come to life.

This is one of my early works, done when I was a member of a vocal trio called “ChoirGirlz.” The image reflected in this painting, to me at least,ย is a light silhouette of the profile of a female singerย holding a microphone, her dark hair swept back as if the wind has blown through it. The woman is me and that’s why I call this painting “The Artist as Singer.” This image was not intentioned into the painting — it simply came into being as the work progressed. It is a reflection of the journey to self-awareness — ever-unfolding and enlightening to those who can see with a soft eye and an open heart.

I invite you to engage the singer, but encourage you to be satisfied with whatever comes into focus for you.

If you find her, let me know …

Copyright Aimwell Enterprises 2012

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11 thoughts on “The Art of Veil Painting — “The Artist as Singer”

  1. Veil painting…I never heard of this but love the idea and results. I will definitely try this…today! I find the symbolization for life is lived in layers, each adding its patina of wisdom and knowledge. Thank you for sharing this. Much love and light on your journey. hugs, pat

    • Thanks for your comment, Pat. I’ll be posting more of my paintings as time passes. I’m also working on publishing a collection and would love to do a show some time. But we’ll see … Veil painting is a meditative art form and I was taught how to do it at a time when I really needed to start to learn to live in the moment, to slow down, to be. It’s very therapeutic with the benefit of a beautiful, meaningful piece of art at the end of it. I haven’t created one in a while, but I’m hoping to get my office set up again to make this possible. Be well and have fun with your painting. Let me know how it goes … ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Dorothy – Pat sent me the link to your Veil Painting … sounds like it is right up my alley. I have unknowingly done some pieces in this fashion … now it will give me a new perspective in doing so … I call mine all my work: “meditative art”. Thank you for sharing and the explanation to go with it!! At first glance, I get the feel of looking up, as if to the sky/heavens, and I see all those beings watching over me! i will study it more and see what other images emerge — maybe I will meet the Singer as well! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thanks for visiting, becca, (and thanks to Pat for sharing this with you.) I’m glad to see you’ve been playing with watercolour in this fashion and hope you find continued enjoyment in it. … Yes, the singer is there and you may never meet her, but I hope you do — she lives among those beings watching over you. … She blew me away when I first recognized her … I could hardly believe what I had created just by being in the moment — being the brush, being the paint, being in the breath of the meditation. I still marvel to this day. … Other veil paintings will be published here in due course ๐Ÿ˜‰ … I plan to start painting again soon … Thanks again, becca, and for following my blog. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. My creativity, which is expressed in a variety of media, is always a meditation for me. It is truly when I most sense my connection with my Creator (except when doing healing work). I like the spontaneity of veil painting. I did one today and am delighted with it even though it is a bit crude. But I can see that I will love the technique. I have been exploring Sacred Geometry in my art for a long time so combined the veiling technique with some Sacred Geometry and see they can work well together with some practice. Thanks again for sharing this with me. Hugs, pat

  4. Pingback: Traces of Them; Traces of Me | In So Many Words

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