It’s incredibly remote, wild, wet and windy. But I am cosy in my cottage studio with a roaring fire in the stove and mugs of tea constantly on the go.
There are lovely friendly artists staying in the other cottages, so far I’ve made two new friends.
I will post some images of work in progress once I get properly started. Lots of painting ideas and maybe a few poems to write too.
Standing at the open window
Of the train rushing through new terrain
Listening to the rhythmic pounding
Of the wheels on the shiny rails
Yes, I will, I do, I can
I see, I make, with love
Yes, I choose, I go, I try
To fly. I make a leap
Choosing the forward momentum
Denying the steel bars
In that cold and hungry
Prison cell of fear
No, to halting fearful saying
You’ve had your fill. It’s too late
No, to thinking it can’t work out
You’re too old, just be still
Even the old goose still makes
The journey South
She doesn’t wait
To grace your Christmas plate
Its my last few days here in Wales for a while, I’m heading back home to Ireland on Tuesday, having been away for two months
While I’ve been away from my studio I’ve been making acrylic sketches on paper.
Today I added a final layer of oil and cold wax medium to the sketches, using just two oil colours, violet and yellow
Then I stuck them up on my bedroom wall with gum strip ,(that sticky backed brown paper that is used for stretching drawing paper)
I also had a great time browsing through some of Richard Diebenkorn’s sketchbooks in the wonderful accessible digital archive from Stanford
Trying to get a painterly, layered, rich, unfussy, not too ‘overworked looking’ effect with acrylics. Using a gloss gel medium. Applying with a squeegee. Layering by transferring onto and from baking paper. Very frustrating. Looking forward to getting back to my oils and cold wax medium in my studio at home!
Some images from an A2 (60x40cm) cartridge pad, and an A4 (40x30cm) brown card sketchbook
I had a fabulous, very short trip to Manhattan in July 2016. I had such a good time, and I want to go back for more! I’m hoping to go for nearly a month this Autumn. To see the ‘fall’ colours, to visit more contemporary galleries in Chelsea, and hopefully to paint, if I can find some studio space!
Here are some photos of street views and some favourite works I saw in galleries on my last trip, and a few of the paintings of mine that came out of it
Matisse and Degas
The High Line, diptych, each canvas 80cm sq, private collection
5th Avenue, small oil sketch in paper made ‘on the road’
Homage, one of a pair of 80cm canvases, available through http://www.velveteasel.co.uk
I have been away from home, visiting family and being a Granny in Wales, for two months, as well as a ten day break in Portugal
So I’ve been away from my studio and not painting
During the last couple of weeks I have begun to crave paint and canvas. So I bought a few materials from local shops and made these two small works on the floor in my daughter’s spare bedroom. In between visits, and in between layers, they’ve been drying in the shed.
My bedroom at my daughter’s home has sliding doors out onto the garden, with views into the trees beyond. And a view out of the side windows to a stand of Scotch Pines. From my bed I can see both dawn and dusk through these trees.
The paintings are not at all a representation of these photos of views. In fact they have more of an essence of a walk in the woods. I even embedded a fern leaf in the paint, removed it the next day to leave its impression, then rolled over it again with more layers.
However, some of the colours are there. A friend of mine said of these two latest pieces that they were a return for me of a ‘confident enigma’. I like that
(from my painting residency at Stiwdio Maelor in Wales, when Huib Fens was on a writers residency)
Painted end of 2015
Sold early 2016 and paid for my trip to San Francisco and New York!
Working on my ‘Rock in the sea’ paintings in February
Some huge pieces on unstretched jute in March
‘Tis calm indeed’ and ‘Moon rising’ from my Spring residency at Stiwdio Maelor in Corris, Wales
The huge, rather surreal piece on unstretched jute ‘Clouds’ from May
The 5 piece orange and blue and black canvases – can’t remember their titles! June
The two big (120cm sq) pieces, ‘Stateside’ made in anticipation of my big US trip in June
Small works on paper (these 2 are ‘Berkeley’ & ‘5th Avenue’) made on the go during my fantastic, life changing USA adventure in June and July
Some of the big bold pieces I made in July as soon as I got back from New York
‘The path’ & ‘Convergence’
August works in the back kitchen in Wales
‘The dance’ & ‘Columba’ also from August in Wales
Works from my second residency in Stiwdio Maelor in Corris, Wales in September
Looking forward to 2017
A great 3 weeks at Stiwdio Maelor
If you are interested in having some time there yourself for your art (including writing) you can email for an application form to email@example.com
The 5 paintings in the top image are all also available through the same email. Funds from any sale of donated works goes both towards the ongoing costs of the residency programme and helps to fund the artist’s next residency!
The other image is of a 65cm painting on canvas that I completed on the residency which is on its way to @greenfusegallery in Westport, County Mayo, Ireland for their next show opening mid November