2018 wasn’t a very productive year for me as far as painting goes. We moved house in the spring, which was very time consuming, and a great deal of the rest of the year was spent designing, preparing and planting a garden. This nourished my creativity so I did not feel the need to be painting too much.
The garden still needs to grow, but I am pleased with the design.
I have not produced many pastels recently as they need to be framed behind glass, and are therefore more trouble to frame, store and send in the post. These days I sell most of my work through Artfinder.com, which means mailing paintings to anywhere in the world.
However, “Wet Sand”, “Bunch of Grapes” and “Long Face” are three pastels that I am particularly pleased with.
“Wet Sand” is from a photograph taken by a friend when we were on holiday in Ireland together. I enjoyed playing with colours here and kept the painting quite loose.
“Bunch of Grapes” was very enjoyable to paint – I tried to keep some looseness in this one too.
“Long Face” is a portrait of a horse that came up to us when out walking one day. I love to do portraits, whether it be people or animals – I think it’s to do with capturing the expression and feeling of the subject
I have been having fun recently experimenting with oils. I painted “French Village” when I returned from a holiday in the Dordogne where the old buildings are so attractive.
I was in the United States in November and, although I lived there for twelve years, I was once again astounded by the brightness of the fall colour, and tried to capture it in “Trees on Fire”.
“Who Do You Think You’re Looking At?” is a small 20 x 20cm painting – a bird portrait with a lovely fierce expression.
I have been enjoying using thicker paint, and “Birches” is a painting done almost entirely using palette knife. This was such fun to do, though I did find control issues with the fiddlier bits – however, this adds to the looseness.
Most of my paintings, both pastels and oils, start with an underpainting – generally in much brighter colours than the finished product. I often like the underpaintings so much that I feel I should stop there, and so this is what I did with “Superiority!”
Maybe I like the underpaintings because I am more relaxed when doing them so I work in a looser fashion, or it could be that the brighter and outlandish colours that I use are attractive to the eye, or a combination of both.
Watch this space for more paintings like this!