Saturday, 22 April 2017

Spring greens ( 3 )

Trying to change direction on the paint....more difficult than I thought, because I paint intuitively, the paintings come out as they do, rather than me deciding which direction to go in. It's fine, I think that the only way is to paint a lot and try to nudge it somewhere else, not that I know which direction I want to go in...research what I like in other people's paintings.

These are today's ( and yesterday's )paint overs, 33 inches square.I wanted greens, I wanted warmth. Maybe I have produced another two paintings that will be destined for the paint over pile !

Acrylic, 33 inches sq. ' the colours of my landscape,'
What do I like.....that it's different than the others gone before....the richness....some of huge textures made by scraping the paint.... It's important for me that I live with it for a few days.....

This was today's acrylic, 33 inches sq.working title,' not my landscape,' .....what did I like...the richness...the textures...the warmth of the creamy/ grey colour....not sure it is a cohesive with it...

Just explaining that my studio chair, a comfortable black office armchair , with arms,is also my easel .  I prop the paintings up on the chair and have put grey parcel tape on huge arms to stop the paintings slipping. I much prefer this to the easel. It works for me !

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Spring greens (2)

Having a major block with the paintings, nothing working, don't like anything etc. etc. etc. well, is it a block when actually you don't want to paint ? Or is it just that you need time out to reflect on your work in order to affect change ? Possibly that is the case, however, often you just need the discipline of going into the studio to do something.....this is today's something....

I tidied up in the studio, often a catalyst for new work. I looked at my paints and thought ..
I want green
I want texture
Maybe I want prettiness
If I look out of the window ,  I see so many different greens....
The textures were  accidental
How do you make a landscape painting out of texture ? Research it.... Off the top of my head I think Lewis Noble, Nicki Heenan
I used masks
I wanted to use splatters but in end didn't
I need to mix some greens

This was the painting, ' A green day, ' for the moment, I like it. I like...
The balance of tones
The small flecks of colour ( I used oil pastel )
The scratching texture ( I used my trusty printing tool )
The greens with the pink
I like that the ochre got into the pink and turned it salmons pink ( research pinks )

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Spring greens

In a lull with the painting at the moment. Nothing feel like it's working. He ho. When I read all the information about maintaining your practice , it tells me that I should aim for 2 to 3 paintings per week. That's ok. I have slowed down but sometimes you need to in order to give thought to what it is you want.

So to the paint. I wanted a combination of pink and green. Still not resolved that interest. I like a salmons pink, not a sugary pink. These were the words of the painting...
Love the combination of pink and green
Love the pink
Hate the green ( light olive green ...too bright )
Wanted ochre
Wanted something dark ( paynes grey...didn't work)
Need some different tones
Just keep putting the paint down
Feel the angst  /flux
Trying to alter the square space from it's predictability....use diagonals...not just ups and downs....probably paint over this one....leave It to breathe overnight....

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Distilled landscapes

Revisiting all the, ' Distilled landscapes, ' well that's the plan. I put these up in a spare bedroom and over time odd ones have gone to new homes and the rest need repainting. It's really just the odd one that I won't touch at all, like this one, that I like every time I go into the room.
It feels more floral that a landscape, but it was created as a landscape. These were the others, all 52 x 35 cms. Acrylic.

Space, calm, grey, cool.

Love the drips.

Poor photo.

I didn't want one big landscape picture...I wanted them to be individual pieces but also work butted up to each other.

 The new wall in the bedroom, complete with sign made by printing out the letters then cutting them out and sticking them on mountboard.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Quiet landscape. Second series

Often , when I have done a series of paintings, I am eager to go somewhere else with them. Not so the Quiet landscapes. I still feel quiet and want to be surrounded by my paintings of Quiet landscapes. We will see then if I make another series of them.

Colours that are quiet ? Grey, white, cool colours ore than warm. Interesting to think of colours as , ' quiet ,' or the opposite.

I revist all the time, adding layers to the old paintings. I win some. I lose some. That's how it goes. And I like paintings almost that I ink are finished but that I don't really like, so that I have nothing to lose on revisiting them, making them bolder....or quieter dependant on my mood.

I have been influenced by the bright Spring light today...gorgeous walk...cold though. So the go to colour today was a very pale cool ice blue. Gorgeous. In revisiting the two paintings today, I put the paint down and then wipe it off. Repeat as many times as needed. You can never wipe the whole layer off with's very sticky paint so always some remains unless I swill it with water.

The colours seemed darker on the photographs , darker than the actual a

I might have thought these were finished at one time...but clearly not today. 
Scratching into the work often with a printmaking tool that looks like a weapon gives me a time out and stops me putting the paint down too quickly .

Thesea re both my preferred size 52 cm sq. 

Going to have a full paint day tomorrow, have a display todo put up in huge Art lounge ( back room)...a deadline is often good for spurring me on....

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Landstills 2

I had finished the display in the Art lounge ( back room ) ...a display of , ' Quiet landscapes, ' and enjoyed them. Quiet, reflective, calm, peaceful. I liked the atmosphere that the paintings helped to create.

I never would have thought to put two paintings together on the chimney breast but I really liked them there.

The board in the corner holds 15 small canvases...well, paper mounted on canvas....still working on the framing of the work on paper.
Quite a lot of the paintings have gone off to Silson Contemporary, Harrogate this week for a show in May. Sarah Collier of Silson contemporary visited this week to select a collection for the Gallery. So I will just have to paint some more. And I don't feel quite done with , ' Quiet landscapes, ' yet.

This was another Landstill. What did I want from these....well a kind of snapshot in paint , a, ' zoom in , ' on the landscape. I wanted them to be abstract and I wanted the paint to , ' flow.' It's hard with this 12 inch size to achieve any kind of, ' flow, ' try again...

I tried to introduce some darker tones and a little more texture...I just need to do more of this size.

A try at a 17.5 x 52 cm piece. Try again.

Friday, 10 March 2017


As an artist it's so important to avoid preconceived ideas. You have got to challenge yourself constantly to produce something new, try new ways of approaching your paintings, new media, new sizes of work , new colour pallette, new anything.

With that in mind , I have been trying to work with different sizes of board. That was so hard for me. And very interesting that it was so hard. I do get used to the same sized board....mainly because I repaint the boards I have over and over, so I am going to get used to a particular size.

With this series I thought I would return to look at the small 15 cm pieces I create as a sketchbook really and try more conciously to work them up into larger pieces. I have made some 12 inch sq.  And 2 inch deep boxes and would like to get my work to flow on this size .

Overall it was hard ( I don't mind that it was hard, I always know that I don't want easy and I always say to myself that number one of a series may be rubbish but number 10 might be worth waiting for !

These were the words that came to mind as I painted.....
Between the hills and the clouds
When I look at this landscape of mine, it looks so different... ( what I mean here is that if you look at or take a photograph of the same area of the landscape throughout the day, it chances so dramatically within half hour ....snapshots of the landscape...landstills....

' Between the landscape and the sky,' acrylic, 12 inches sq.

' Gently distilled,' acrylic,12 inches sq. ( this one was a rework of one from a few weeks a go that never made it .....)

' Bringing the sky down,' acrylic , 12 inches sq.
Words....I like the ambiguity....they all seem so serious.....I think doing them small, I am trying to include everything when I can't, I need to zoom in....are cool colours more serious ?....

' Between the trees,' acrylic, 12 inches sq.

' Landstill ,' acrylic,12 inches sq.

' I like the random marks that are part of the process,' acrylic, 12 inches sq.
Random words....landstills...snapshots of the landscape....I like the random marks that are part of the process..distilled contemplation...too much clutter...brought the sky down...flat skies...the landscape element needs to be distilled.....

' Include everything, ' acrylic, 12 inches sq.

' A snapshot of my landscape, ' acrylic, 12 inches sq.

Put them up in the Art lounge ( back room ) so living with them now.....they fit in and compliment the quiet landscapes on the other the room, ' Summer exhibition, ' in the Art lounge.....calm, quiet, reflective, still....I love how art has an energy almost of it's own, how it can create an atmosphere in a lucky to be able to do this....maybe I should paint some of my landscapes on the cushions ( Caroline Lingwood comes to mind .... Research....) And the whole display is crying out for some poetry....research again....