I have started drawing again. There has been a year long pause since breaking my shoulder in a cycling mishap a year ago. But most Wednesday evenings now see me putting pencil and charcoal to paper again. Drawing brings a smile to my face and makes me deeply happy. It’s such a simple thing, quite focus, attentive observation and a balance between the two hemispheres of one’s mind. Beautiful.
I had wondered if my drawing would be rusty, but spending many hours a week teaching others to draw continues to improve my observational skills even when there is an enforced break.
For a long time in my old studio I used to randomly select an image of the day from my collection of artists books. This served to inspire, delight and remind me of the scope of creative possibility. Today in my new studio in my garden I am very pleased to have re-instated image of the day on my favourite retro industrial mechanical drawing table. Today’s featured artist is German photographer Uta Barth, who uses depth of field and focus to explore visual perception and meaning. She makes beautiful, evocative and slightly lonely images.
The last few weeks have been dedicated to an exciting new diy project in our garden. Richard and I have been renovating our garden shed to turn into an office and art studio. It was never just an average shed, in fact Richard built it as a garden room/studio, it’s about 4 x 3 metres with pleasing views of the garden. We have been using it for storage in the last couple of years, but things are changing and the shed has now been clad with wooden boards and painted with traditional Hertfordshire black barn paint. We installed a gutter and a water-butt just in time to collect all this beautiful rain. I am in the process of painting the inside (one coat to go) and we have also bought a tiny little multi-fuel stove so I can stay warm in there all year. The new flue is being manufactured and will hopefully be ready next week. I am excited and looking forward to moving in…
The tilt of the world is changing and the beautiful late afternoon sun has made its way around to the back of our house, making lovely evening compositions with my painting “Woolen Blanket [the colour of the sea] with Apples and an Intermittent Lighthouse Beam”.
Every year there comes a time when one really notices the days drawing in. Soft grey days, when being cosy and baking are back on the agenda. Today it was apple crumble and an afternoon meandering in the loft studio.
A new series of 12 x 3″ paintings; Colour Sampler, acrylic on linen board. Memories recorded in a grid of colour and light. The paintings capture the feeling, tone and experience of a particular moment in time. These and other new paintings are on show at the Gravelly Barn Summer Exhibition this weekend. To see further information and examples of this work click here.
New paintings finished this week. Time, place, memory, colour and light. A still frame, a captured moment.They will be shown from 10th – 12th September at Gravelly Barn.
Self-portrait with pears at Kettle’s Yard house, Cambridge. It always a pleasure to visit this wonderful house. The light, the rooms, the spaces, the relaxed collection of images are received as intended…”Kettle’s Yard is a place where visitors would ‘find a home and a welcome, a refuge of peace and order, of the visual arts and of music.’ It is a favourite place to spend an afternoon.
So much painting in the last month, every square inch of our flat and just one lovely canvas. This one forms the beginning of my summer projects. This painting and many more will be exhibited next weekend at the Gravelly Barn Art Show in Braughing, Hertfordshire.
I have spent today teaching an anatomy drawing class which included careful observations of a human skeleton. It is amazing to spend an entire day just looking at how all the parts go together. What a fantastic structure it is. And a lovely feeling at the end of the day when walking to the car one has a renewed sense of one’s own bones stepping out.