Jarrett Burch — Painter
“Finding Peace Through Paint”
Yellows and golds with hints of green and orange meld at the top of the canvas. The colors morph into a hazy line of deep reds and rich orange before quickly fading into dark blue and purple. A final puff of light blue like smoke float up from the bottom edge of the canvas. “This is Frank’s Place,” by Jarrett Burch shows turmoil and tranquility, intensity and calmness. The uncertainty gives the viewers the opportunity to find their own interpretation.
“The truth behind my paintings is personal….It’s abstract emotion. [My] odd titles are a means to keep viewers at arm’s length of what a painting means to me,” Burch explains.
Jarrett Burch started painting seriously in 2002. For him, it was a way to work through depression: “Happening to see an episode of ‘Changing Rooms’ on BBC America was kind of a spark….Each episode features two couples switching houses for a weekend and redecorating one room of their ‘switched’ house with a tiny budget and…a professional designer….Something about that show made me want to paint, and [I]realize that making art again could be another tool to fight through depression. Fortunately, [the depression] went into remission, but my enthusiasm for painting continued.”
But it’s not just enthusiasm that pushes Burch forward. “I strongly feel this is something I have to do. Like I’m trying to reach something. Or exorcise something,” Burch says. As he continues to reach for that “something” his artwork has become more refined, more personal. “I think I’m trying to convey a sense of peace and shelter.”
Burch’s creative process is highly intuitive. “It’s very important to be in the moment and trust myself,” Burch says. “My instincts are good, and the painting will ‘tell me’ when it’s finished.” Because of this, he doesn’t put himself on a strict time frame. “Some pieces are finished in one session. Others take weeks or months to complete,” he says.
Part of that creative process is playing around with his paints. Burch usually uses acrylics and creates his unique look with “a lot of overpainting…and a lot of scumbling and blending” right on the canvas. “Usually I don’t do a lot of color mixing on the palette. [Instead, I] work directly on the painting surface.”
In addition to painting, Burch has been exploring toy camera photography and digital painting. He enjoys toy camera photography because the “charming defects like light leaks and warped lenses render photos surreal.” With viewfinders that are more for show than functionality, Burch explains that he can’t overthink his shots. It forces him to let go and trust his instincts.
Burch’s digital painting is done on his Kindle Fire’s Sketchbook application. He uses his index finger as the brush and works towards “deep colors, special effects, and easy clean-up afterwards.”
Burch strives to create the end product. While he enjoys the process of putting paint on canvas, “the painting,” he says, ‘exists on its own, as is.”