​I have been playing with these ideas and tones, this extract is from Wikipedia:

Shibui (渋い) (adjective), shibumi (渋み) (noun), or shibusa (渋さ) (noun) are Japanese words which refer to a particular aesthetic of simple, subtle, and unobtrusive beauty.

The colors of shibusa are “muddy” colors. For example, in interior decorating and painting, gray is added to primary colors to create a silvery effect that ties the different colors together into a coordinated scheme. Depending upon how much gray is added, shibui colors range from pastels to dark. Occasionally, a patch of brighter color is added as a highlight.

The seven elements of shibusa are simplicity, implicity, modesty, silence, naturalness, everydayness, and imperfection.


without you can’t get in

It started with a search for something to paint over because I’ve run out of canvas.

I chose these 2 as they are rather boring and not too textured or lumpy

They are each 70 x 50cm on board

I laid down some first layers and decided to turn them sideways

I was thinking about people out on the street during these cold winter nights and started to make some loose marks with solvent and a palette knife. I have some new gold Winsor and Newton oil. Added some of that, mixed with wax, with a roller. The shapes are clumsy and awkward

The song from Paul Simon’s new album, called wristband, the third verse running through my head. The bit about riots and how not having a wristband to get you in the door becomes a metaphor for the excluded and disenfranchised. Thinking about the election of Trump. And Brexit.

Add more colour. Roll over and obliterate most of the scraped marks. Make some new marks with a graphite stick

Thinking too about the desperate situation in Aleppo. And David Wolfe’s moving and horifying before and after photos on Facebook
It’s not about pretty pictures

What is it about? Painting? What do we do it for? Why? How? Is there any point?

Darker and deeper

More confusing

I don’t know. But I keep painting

(Header image is another stage on the journey, not the finished image – I signed it then changed my mind)

keep 💙 painting

There is a growing movement of artists,  whatever their medium, refusing to be downcast by events on the current world stage

This is hope.

Keep 💙 painting 

And be kind


black bushel

Progress with the second huge 2m canvas after a grumpy day under a cloud of doubt yesterday. ‘Start again, start again. Start again’ 🙂


200 x 120cm






Dribbles sideways




Base coat



my qualia of turquoise

“Uses of the Term ‘Qualia’
(1) Qualia as phenomenal character. Consider your visual experience as you stare at a bright turquoise color patch in a paint store. There is something it is like for you subjectively to undergo that experience.”






5 canvases
4 @ 100 cm x 80cm
1 @ 100 cm x 120cm
A diptych and a triptych
Or possibly a quintych

A strange starting point today,  prompted to look up the word ‘qualia’ by a friends post on facebook, an investigation in paint followed!