Down to the Woods | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 28.5 x 41cm | NOW SOLD
The last eighteen months have been an exciting journey of discovery for me as I've experimented with paint and collage. I feel I've come a long way in a relatively short time. Just to give you some context: I've worked as an artist specialising in printmaking since I graduated from art school in 1995 - that's 28 years of really focusing on a very specific way of working. Printmaking has been my life and livelihood and will continue to be so but I feel the need to stretch myself in new directions.
Black Cat among the Flowers | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 27 x 37cm | NOW SOLD
Thoughts about painting were surfacing when my children were small and I was reading to them every night. I chose the most beautifully illustrated children's books to keep myself going (with the endless repetition!) I saw a range of styles and methods that were quite different from the fine art world and I found myself wanting to give it a go - not to be an illustrator but to use collage and paint in a distinctive naive style. My children are now 20 and 16 so it's been a long gestation period!
A Tiger by the Tail | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 25 x 37cm | Unmounted £190 Mounted £205 Framed with art glass £280
If you've been following me for a while, you will have seen the development of my painting from a slightly rocky start. It was frustrating to begin with, to not feel like I was any good. Listening to Louise and Alice on the Art Juice podcast helped with the psychology around this. Really, you just need to keep going and not doubt that it will get better with practice. Another important idea from them was that if you pursue the things you love - both subject and technique, it will naturally lead into a body of work with a distinctive style.
Tyger, Tyger Burning Bright | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 21.5 x 32cm | Unmounted £180 Mounted £195 Framed with art glass £260
So, with that pre-amble, I'm delighted to share my latest paintings with collage. They mark another step along the creative journey. I began making the backgrounds in June and have been adding elements to them in breaks between projects and holidays. As you know, I love garden flowers; I also love animals. Initially I felt that animals should be depicted in their proper habitat but I had a modest eureka moment where I thought I'll just put the flowers and animals together! They're obviously not realistic depications, so why not?!
Eye of the Tiger | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 27 x 28.5cm | Unmounted £180 Mounted £195 Framed with art glass £260
I've had a lot of fun along the way: Painting the collage papers is very liberating as there's no particular aim other than putting colours together in interesting layers. Creating the backgrounds is a bit addictive as I find rubbing the paint around reminds me of inking up etching plates - something I did a lot of in the past. I watch animal videos (also fun) and freeze frame to draw a particular outline. Then I have the delight of cutting out shapes and glueing them onto the background - which brings back the joy of childhood when that was my favourite thing! I do hope my enjoyment shows in the finished pieces.
Hunting | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 19 x 19cm |NOW SOLD
Domestic cats appear in a few of these paintings. I was raised with cats and when I look back through old family photographs there are many of me holding Sammy - our beautiful ginger tom and Suzy, a slightly crazed, long-haired white cat. I love the way a cat can animate a garden scene, giving it a focus and a story protangonist.
Cat and the Moon | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 20.5 x 28.5cm | Unmounted £180 Mounted £195 Framed with art glass £260
The working process is quite different from my monotypes where I need to plan how everything will line up from the outset. With the paintings, I have no plan, just a loose procedure for bringing together the collage elements with a suitable background. Compositional choices are made along the way. It's quite refreshing for me not to have a plan! I think about how the colours and shapes relate to one another, swapping and moving them until it looks both balanced and interesting. I can start to imagine little stories as the animals take up residence in their new environment.
Up the Garden Path | Original painting | Acrylic paint with collage on paper | Size 28 x 28cm | Unmounted £200 Mounted £220 Framed with art glass £295
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