Back with more words…Wittering on, but it’s a pleasure.

What/how words express is handy…Discourse makes/becomes a kind of structure around thoughts which ties them in, keeps them in order.  Logic.  But painting…

There is structure too, never to be disregarded.  There is composition, grammar, but it needs rooting, not in rules and regulations (though they must be known about, and sometimes followed) but in instinct.  And this is not definable.  So will I just jump in and not worry about it?  Yes. It’s the only way. 

This image is of a recent experiment…a good friend with a critical eye (of the very talented sort) points out I need to change the brown “skid mark” top left of image, and I agree. 

And back to domestic bliss, I have to go now because the children are about to start a war.

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Using this a bit like a notebook now. 

http://abstractcritical.com/2012/01/what-paint-does/

This was such a good read.

I’m so pregnant with paint myself that I seriously need to stop blogging and get on with it. 

I’ve just finished a painting “Til The Cows Come Home” which I will post up soon.  Need to take a better image of it as the one I have is far too overexposed.

Here is a work in progress.  When I say “in progress” I mean that I am still thinking about it, not completely 100% finished, but maybe not that far off.  It takes a few months after I have finished applying paint on a painting to resolve it finally in my mind.  Sometimes I carry on a lot, sometimes just add a little more paint, and sometimes I just agree with the place I stopped painting in!!!

I would prefer to use oils to be honest, but I find that because of restricted space, the fact I tend to work on more than one painting at a time, and that I need to put them somewhere to dry,  I am using acrylics right now, at this point in the year.  It is handy that they dry quickly.  I am sorting out my workspace so that I can leave more work to dry on the walls.  Acrylics are also great for experimenting with surface textures and as this is something I am interested in right now.  Though I see myself quite possibly getting more pictorial with time, (indeed, I don’t feel it right to neglect this aspect of painting),  I also feel it important to experiment very thoroughly with the materials I use, and this is something which has to be done, not for effect or any determining course, but just because it must be done.  One of the things I enjoyed at the  Gerhard Richter “Panorama” Exhibition at the Tate Modern recently was to see that there’s not rule that a painter should abide in one camp or another…Paint figuratively, paint non objectively, what does it matter?  Does one have to do one, and not the other? Should one have to nail ones flag to one mast and shoot the other ship down?

 

 

Ah, well, I won’t be giving you a picture of the work I have in the Hidden Artist Exhibition at Denbies, Dorking, next week.  That would be telling!  I do think it’s a great move on Denbies part to host this event, which will benefit the NSPCC. 

See: http://www.hiddenartists.co.uk/artists_and_sponsors.html

I’m getting into the swing of another year, and excited about how my painting is progressing.  I’m expecting things to move on with pace as I devote myself over the next few years to “thrashing it out”, which is a phrase I heard recently which I’ll adopt as a motto I think.  IF I had a great printer I might also devote a bit of time into working on some prints/mixed media, but as I don’t, this leaves the time clear for painting…this might be best for me anyway.  I always fall into the trap of diversifying rather than focusing, and while I get loads of ideas that way, if I don’t get them down, like balloons, they could carry me away!

That does sound fun…

And I am going to try out some woodcarving…

And there’s another exhibition coming up in May at Leatherhead Theatre…

And…

I could make that title so much more wordy,  if it wasn’t so early in the morning.

My feet now are recovered from my thirteen hour walk around this years London Art Fair. 

I joined a guided tour led by Pryle Behrman Curator of Art Projects, and I was glad of this because it was interesting and nice and relaxed, not pretentious, which I feared.  He said that he would be happy to talk until “the cows came home”.  I am still waiting for “the cows to come home”, and so the talk I imagine is still in progress…

What stood out for me, alongside waiting for the cows to come home, was, of course, some of the paintings.   Judith Bridgland’s paintings hit me like a kick in the stomach, which doesn’t sound good, but does at least express a little bit of the punch which someone who handles paint like it springs from the tips of their fingers can give to a viewer through the experience of looking at their work.  I am not a great lover of thickly applied paint generally, but when its done like this…I love it.  

Seeing one of Henry Moores prints on hessian was also a highlight for me.  The scale and physicality of the print on the surface of the hessian was something which i have wanted to view “in the flesh” for a while.  It made me note down to remember to experiment with some hessian in my own work.  I’ve done it before but didn’t like it.  However, that’s never a reason not to try something again.   The Boyle Family’s work “Study For The Fire Station With Melted Records” 1989 (Painted fibre Glass) was another beam of similar happiness because to see the actual work in front of my eyes was a proper encounter and one which I have wanted for longer than I can remember,  Well, I can just remember stumbling across their work as a teenager;  it made a huge impression on me.  Looking back on my own work over the last few years, particularly the series of photographs of the ground in my local area, I can see how it seeped into my life unawares.  The unexpected benefits of pushing pushchairs around my locality!

I purchased a book on Michael Honnor.  Because I like landscape paintings, and while I don’t sit outside much and paint myself, to see his work reminds me that I ought to.  Plus I like very much the way he draws into the paint and I need to be continually reminded of that!  I have a notebook full of other painters and paintings which in some way “fed” me, and reminded me either of something which I have just started, or need to try out,  in terms of technique or subject matter.  It’s quite beneficial to see such a mix of work in one place and as the time goes by you gradually recognise more clearly what it is that you are personally drawn to. This itself can be quite helpful in terms of being able to recognise what you love and where your passion and interests lie, and, free to see it in others work and not your own, you get ideas as to different ways you might extend your own experiments.  I am sadly lacking in the amount of critical input I would ideally like in my painting practice right now, (apart from a few fellow painter friends), however, one must be one’s own critic and sustain that position throughout.  I know.  I like other people’s perspectives though.  They are so much more interesting than my own!

On the Duncan R Miller Fine Arts stand “Paxos Fishing Boat” beckoned me…A boat with flowers tied to the front of it.   I’ll say no more, but remember this, and resolve to explore this motif for myself sometime. 

Robert Denny’s 1958  oil on board  painting  (June 1958) cried out for more space, and it’s a problem viewing large paintings in settings like this, but what an inspiration it was.  Very strong dark and light compositional structure held the mixture of strong, heavy brushstrokes with the lighter more fluid areas.   I took some time with this painting, asking “What exactly makes it work so well?” and returned (once more) to the underlying conclusion, (which seems to be proved to me time and time again), that when the composition is right, you can do whatever you want and it will look good.  Well, maybe not “whatever” but let’s just say, you can manage to carry things off in a respectable manner! 

So I leave the fair, full to bursting with paintings I need to paint.  It’s painful, these time limitations and so I must make a hasty exit from this journalling matter to at least increase my chances of getting some block of time today to get some painting done.  I’m pleased to say that I haven’t seen anything like some of the directions I have in my mind to pursue, so that’s good.  Nothing is new, but it’s exciting to think that in some small way you might be wandering off the well trodden path into an area of the forest which is relatively unexplored. 

 

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