My thoughts on painting
There has always been a need for me to record, either by drawing or painting, for as long as I can recall. It is, perhaps, the need to make a statement or influence a view, who knows, but it is an essential part of me. It has been a useful tool too, whether for designing a house (we built our own), identifying a bird or capturing a passing cloud.
Travelling and living in both India and Australia made me acutely aware of the intensity of colours and for me was the beginning of the development of a strong and more vibrant palette. I am still exploring the use of colour and trying to understand how colours interact in relation to each other. One simple stroke will sometimes change a painting, yet it takes for ever to discover that stroke.
My painting has grown out of frustration. Not satisfied with recording what is in front of me I have tried to distil colours to make them work harder and to better effect. To make a painting more absorbing I have tried to create contrasts, this in turn brings light into subjects and for me creates an intellectual stimulation. But the learning process goes on yet the question is always the same – what makes a painting work?
Light is the over-riding consideration, the generator in most of my work. To create a sense of atmosphere is the ultimate goal.
Pastel is a perfect medium for this: fast and yet vibrant, and especially suiting my temperament which is verging on the impatient. Over the years I have discovered the many subtleties of the medium, especially learning how to use hard and soft pastels to best effect.
I also enjoy the completely different discipline of oils, which I find totally absorbing but infinitely longwinded compared to pastels. Long deliberation before applying paint!
Where my paintings are going is unknown. Paintings lead on from paintings: I find they unconsciously develop and evolve. Ideas of how colours may react start new thoughts. The work alters to be more simple and fluid as the subject becomes familiar.
Painting is still very absorbing and I am never totally satisfied with the result, which makes me come back and try again.