In 2020 our world was turned on its head by the CV19 pandemic. Work dried up in my business as we plunged into the new reality of lockdowns, restrictions on movement and extreme isolation.
This had a huge impact on my mental health. I decided, 5 months into the pandemic, that I needed to learn a new skill. My writing muse had left me. What could I do, I asked myself, that might light the fire of my creative self once again.
I decided to pick up paintbrushes, some water colours and paint. The sense of achievement it gave me then, as now, was life changing. I taught myself photorealism in the School of Anna Mason and now that this is too hard on my eyes I have moved into the freer, openly expressive world of abstract art. As with all creative endeavour it is a journey of exploration & growth, a battle not to be overly self-critical and one of much reward.
I have just started experimenting with acrylics.
Here is just a small sample of my work.
A week or so into my painting journey I started to learn how to control water and pigment better by practising layering paint.
My 1st attempt at photorealistic watercolour painting in the school of Anna Mason 3 weeks after I picked up a brush. To be honest, I still look at this and marvel that I was able to do it.
Peas In A Pod
My 2nd painting in this style.
My 3rd attempt in this style of painting.
All the paintings in this style are this size and painted layer upon layer using very tiny brushes. This really tested my patience, I can tell you!
Glossy Black Cherries
My 1st attempt in this style at something glossy.
This painting demonstrates the importance of using high quality paper of the right type. Here the paper is too rough and it has an impact on the final look for the flower.
Layers and layers and layers of values and tones of reds and oranges, using negative space to create the shiny effect. This painting drove me quite crazy! Like all most of them it took me 8 hours. I have to admit, I look at this and wonder how on earth I managed to do this after painting for a month or so!
Orange Segment and Skin
This took me about 9 hours. I enjoyed the process very much.
The final painting I have done in this style for now. I find this style of painting very hard on my eyes and after I did this one I stopped painting for several months.
The move to a more abstract style of watercolour painting. I have used this as a preparatory study for an acrylic on canvas I have done.
My 1st attempt at this freer, abstract style of painting. I have to admit, a real struggle to enjoy at first after the photorealism.
My 1st attempt at using masking fluid. I also used salt in this painting to create special effects. I am experimenting much more now with salt, alcohol, clingfilm and various other things in my watercolour works.