Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Doorways into Magic (part one)

'Tom's Midnight Garden,' (2) acrylic on board, 60 x 40cm

How does an artist find a doorway into their particular world when painting? Having spoken to many artists and friends, it became obvious that each of us has our own special entrance point. For me, painting is a form of magic and if I work with it passionately and with attention, I can catch some of that magic and give it form on canvas. I love the material quality of paint and like to explore that line between references to the world around and my inner images - the kind of pictures that stories threw into my mind as a child.
'Tom's Midnight Garden,' oil and acrylic on board, 60 x 50cm

One of my latest series of paintings is based on images associated with a favourite childhood book, 'Tom's Midnight Garden.' Though I did not seek to illustrate this theme, I have explored elements the title suggested to me as a child and let the paint evolve them into a parallel for my internal visualisations. I like to work in this way. A word or title can be the springboard for a painting and I will do a lot of drawings to get some ideas down, then that language and sets of forms filter through into the paintings. But I always like to be surprised and spontaneous, and to let the painting suggest elements and lead me into a new place.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Inner and Outer worlds

'Somewhere Else,' oil and acrylic on board, 40 x 50cm

With spring in full flow, I am making a lot of paintings on paper, just to respond to the wonderful energies and colours while experimenting with different types of mark-making; brush, crayon, felt-tip, pencil, etc.
'Rhythms,' wax crayon, felt-tip, watercolour and gouache on paper
'Inscape,' watercolour and felt-tip on paper

It's always a case of layering my inner world with my reactions to the world around me, and finding an image that captures these feelings.
'Remembered,' watercolour, gouache and felt-tip on paper

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Easter Break

Fiona and 'Arrowheads in Lemba Valley,' (Cyprus series) acrylic on wooden panel, 162 x 108cm

As I go into the Easter break, I have 4 paintings waiting for answers, including my largest one. Back to work on Tuesday!

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Already Into March

The Dome, Brighton
The Big Heart auction exhibition at the Dome, Brighton

'Rising Light,' oil and acrylic on board, 30 x 40cm
Normally I hate these winter months but the first part of this year has been so busy that I have not really had time to notice anything! The Big Heart auction at the Dome in Brighton took place on March 3rd. It was a really good exhibition of 200 donated artworks and I was pleased to have a painting in the show. Later I heard that everything sold and the charity raised around £30,000.
Brighton Pavilion
'An Unveiling,' oil and acrylic on board, 20 x 30cm

Since then, I have made quite a few new paintings, going in some new directions. I've also sent out more applications for exhibitions and now I'm playing the waiting game! But as Spring leaves its trails across the landscape, I always feel my energies rising, and I find this one of my most creative times of the year.

Monday, 16 February 2015

Exhibitions and Connections

Me with one of my large watercolours at the exhibition
The New Year began with a speed I haven't experienced before! The exhibition BRUNCH took place at Apothiki studios, in Paphos, Cyprus from January 25th to January 30th. The three of us - Valerie Brennan, Bridget Fahy and myself - first met about 4 years ago on Facebook. We all have a connection with Cyprus: they live there, I used to live there and return frequently. We set up our show on January 24th, on a lovely sunny warm day, and whittled a large number of paintings down to around 7 by each of us. We hung them on the stone walls of the old Apothiki (storehouse) which is now their studio and part-time gallery. There were a large number of visitors at the Opening and everyone found that the work showed our connections both artistically and through our Cyprus connection.

'Evocation,' oil and acrylic on canvas, 35 x 25cm

We all showed works on paper and canvas. There were several articles in Cyprus newspapers and also online. I found it extremely positive as it affirmed our connections and also our ongoing ideas about painting, which we have exchanged over many years on Facebook.

Since my return, I have been doing a lot of painting on small boards, in preparation for larger works. I have also had a painting accepted for the Big Heart auction at the Brighton Dome Pavilion, from March 3rd to March 7th. The auction is also available to see online:

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Fresh Start

'Symphony of Choices,' oil and acrylic on canvas, 90 x 45cm

Though I hate January, I love the start of the New Year. It always seems to allow one a fresh start. I have just primed some boards to begin my first paintings of 2015, and after an over-view, I am ready to make some changes. 

It has been a few weeks since I have been able to paint because, apart from Christmas celebrations and obligations, there have been so many other things to see to. Just after Christmas, I found that my book, THE JAGGED GREEN LINE, had reached 65 in the top 100 of Kindle's Historical/women's fiction category. On the same day, my essay went 'live' on the chicago-based online art magazine, Neoteric art. I am attaching the link below:

Neoteric art magazine

I love writing these kind of essays and so far it has had a good response!

'Cyprus Walk,' oil and acrylic on board, 60 x 45cm

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Once Again.

'Landscape-Poem,' acrylic on canvas, 50 x 60cm

Once again, we are almost at the end of another year! I have not written for over a month due to completing several applications, and work going off for a show. I've applied to the Beijing Biennale, which was a long, complex application as both a CD of images and photos (large ones) were required. Also, I am submitting work for a watercolour exhibition, and 2 weeks ago 10 paintings went off for a corporate exhibition in Crawley.

Looming ahead is the exhibition in Cyprus, in the third week of January. But for now, Christmas is less than 48 hours away, and I just put up our tree last night! Happy Christmas everyone. 

My final painting, for this post, is 'Homage to Glyn,' which was painted in memory of my mentor and dear friend, the artist Glyn Hughes, and memories of times in Cyprus with him. It is 60 x 45cm, oil and acrylic on canvas.