Friday, July 30, 2010

Playing With Paint

Over the past couple of months I have been locked in a battle with paint. I believe I may now be winning!

It's all been about finding the technique that works with the way I draw, and my view of the world. The first two images are the development of a large painting, and the second two are small test paintings about 4 inches square each. I've used heavily thinned oil paint, using thinners, rather than white spirit.

Comments please. Ta. Love you!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Weekend Away

I'm not well. For many reasons, I'm not well.

This has been going on most of my life. Sometimes I just want to be normal, to enjoy the simple things in life without worrying, panicking, stressing or needing to hide under a rock when it all just gets too much for me.

But then someone comes along and saves me, for a short time, from my illness. Makes me feel safe in a new place and with strangers all around, somewhere away from home where my safety zone is 2 hours away by car.

So this weekend I got taken away from it all, had a wonderful day in Whitby, bimbling around the town and feeling near normal for a short time. I slept in a tent on a faulty airbed for 2 nights. I drank beer, which made me immediately sleepy. I ate fish and chips and scrambled eggs and perfectly cooked vegetables and new potatoes. I drank tea. By the gallon. By the galleon! I was tea'd out.

I took photos. I sketched. I slept. I relaxed. I laughed. I snoozed. I met a hundred dogs and played with a particularly lovely Labrador and a shy but warmly enthusiastic collie. I chased a chicken, fed it a biscuit and offended it's ladylike sensibilities when I tried to stroke the fine golden brown feathers on her back. I watched doves canoodling and saw a baby dove shuffling to the edge of the nest to extrude green and white poo into the foliage below.

I marvelled at a shining sunset. I laughed hysterically but quietly at the couple connecting noisily 3 times in one night. I laughed even longer and louder when I saw them the next morning and realised they weren't teenagers. Who knew accountants could be so rampant?

I ignored the things that frightened me, put my head in my reading book and my sketchbook. I looked at the detail of the architecture and forgot about the strangeness of strangers.

I had a wonderful time and felt revived and exhausted by the new experiences I had in Whitby.

Thanks you Michelle for a wonderful weekend. Sorry I can't always tell you how I'm feeling.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Good day

Today I feel as if I made some progress with painting, trying a new technique and starting a new big painting. I also bought a book on oil painting in the hope it may teach me something!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Although my latest college project is about the human form, I've recently been enjoying drawing portraits of my friends when they visit me at my studio.

Its a nervous time drawing friends, because you never know if they are going to be insulted or pleased by what I've drawn. But I do warn them all that I don't do flattery and it takes me a while to really capture someone and I need to keep drawing them over and over to get them right. Not sure if they believe me!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Life drawing 4

Sometimes when I go life drawing I feel less than successful. And others I have a brilliant day.

Today was a good day.

Friday, July 16, 2010


Despite recent health difficulties I am doing my best to get a selection of my work ready for exhibition. To that end I trawled lots of 2nd hand and charity shops for reusable picture frames and have so far framed 7 pieces of work ready for hanging.

Here they are.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


One of the side effects of the first few weeks of being on Prozac is the feeling of emotional flatness, the numbness that comes about 7-10 days in and stays for about 3-4 weeks. I'm now on day 11 and it arrived on Monday, knocked me off my feet and made me stay in bed pretty much all day yesterday.

I am tired but not sleepy, disinterested but bored, hungry but not bothered about food and I feel like crying but haven't the energy to create tears.

I really hate the detached feeling that I have and will continue to have for the next few weeks. The only thing that makes it even slightly bearable is knowing it is not permanent, that it will evaporate overnight in about 3 or 4 weeks. I'll just wake up and feel good, and it won't be fake feeling good, no brittleness, just happiness.

I've just finished making a cushion cover for my friend Pat to put in her Camper van. I love making things for friends, and feel like it makes a connection for me at times when I struggle to connect with people. It has given me the impetus to do more textiles, and I have a yen to create a quilt, a story of some kind, but as yet it is an unformed idea. I will post as and when it begins to form. To keep you all occupied, here's a pic of the cushion cover in process.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010


Today I was upset. By someone I thought was a friend. But, as it turns out, isn't.

I'm not going to go into detail here, but suffice to say I am really offended that someone could repeat a lie told about me that they know isn't true and then accuse me of being a liar.

I have feelings and they are hurt. Consider me no longer your friend. Because you certainly aren't mine.

Friday, July 02, 2010


I have finally finished the Hands On painting. It has taken me about 8 weeks to do, and from the start I really wasn't sure what it was going to become.

I'm very happy to have finished this. I may do another version again at some point in the future, when I have more confidence with paint, but for now, I am happy.

On top of finishing this I have also been painting some smaller pieces, just to get a real feel for the paint. Here's the latest selection. Some are better than others, and I think that has more to do with the drawings they are from rather than the painting itself.