Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Beauty of Three

Today, my husband and I were studying Dark Matter and Dark Energy, which together make up 95% of our universe ( 25% and 70% respectively), and about which very little is known.  Everything we actually know about is called Ordinary Matter (atoms, people, galaxies), which makes up only 5% of what is known to exist. These 3 things make up our universe.  

          Equally interesting is that there are only a few things comprising all that we are able to see (ordinary matter). Particle physics tells us that the atom, thought to be the smallest particle, actually has three parts to it: protons, neutrons and electrons. Further division reveals that protons and neutrons each have within them teeny tiny things called quarks, which appear in divisions of 3. There are 3 quarks in a proton and 3 quarks in a neutron. The string theories are even more interesting…

          When we were looking at matter that emits or absorbs light, of course I thought about painting. Light emits, pigments absorb. This is the science of painting! In the spectrum, there are 3 primaries and 3 secondaries, made up of 3 “warm” colors (red, orange and yellow) and 3 “cool” colors (green, blue and violet). And when I am painting, I follow John Singer Sargent’s value-compression strategy of pushing my values down to 3: light, mid-tone and dark. Even composition theory suggests divisions of 3 for finding the sweet spot and keeping things from being too static. I’m always thinking “3” when I work without really being conscious of it.

          We ourselves are said to be made up of body, soul and spirit; the soul being further divided into mind, will and emotions. When I’m working on the figure, I’m thinking, “eyes, nose, mouth… head, torso, legs… upper arm, lower arm, hand…” The way we’re made reminds me that we were made, and according to the Bible, we were made in God’s image. Artists deal in images. Images are products of the imagination that reflect the maker in some way. This finally reminds me of the Trinity: Father, Son, Holy Spirit; God in three persons. The Father reminds me of the soul. You can’t see the soul but it’s what “makes” a person that person: his mind, his will and his emotions. The Son reminds me of the body: the physical manifestation of the person and the Holy Spirit is the most mysterious of all. Not to make any grand theological statement; just to say that, thinking about life (birth, life, death) (past, present, future), I’m struck by the beauty of three.   

          This is part of a painting that I cropped to show an experiment that I did awhile back in spectral sequencing (laying out colored objects according to their order in the spectrum). The colors were red, blue and yellow (the primaries), with purple, orange and green (the secondaries) between:


  1. I love this post Kim. Thank you. Sincerely, Peggi

    1. Peggi, Thank you very much.
      I hope we meet soon, Kim.

  2. Amazing food for thought...I meant your blog and not your painting! LOL! I too am on a creative journey with both painting and blogging and want my work to radiate my love for the Lord. I will be following your blog in the future. Thanks for inspiring me today.


    1. Haha, thank you Julie :-)
      You've inspired me right back!
      I will follow you too, Kim.

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