Landscapes and cityscapes inspire me to paint. Because it is an all-round experience rather than a purely visual one that moves me, I do not try to make a visual reproduction of what I have seen. I delight in the process of a kind of dialogue between the overall feeling that I experience within the landscape and the possibilities presented by working with paint.
Once I am in the studio and start working on a painting, I apply paint to the prepared boards in an intuitive way, exploring the interplay of colours, textures, gestures and mark-making with different tools. I pause often, to recall the experience of being in the landscape. My techniques involve building up layers, scraping back, rubbing, blending, scratching and splattering the paint onto the surface. I work on a number of paintings at the same time, moving between them to stay fresh.
After some time, and as the layers build up, the beginnings of a composition or a particular quality of colour combination and mark-making emerges. I try to stay alert and to notice when this happens. When it does, I follow and build upon it. Sometimes it’s a process that flows, but more often it’s an all-engaging wrestle; gaining, losing and then re-gaining control of the painting over a period of time. The paintings will often develop into a cityscape or landscape in an oblique way, as the work progresses.
I tend to become interested in the suggestion of form as it appears or emerges within a field of colour and texture, and also in creating a sense of space within the surface of the painting.
The process is one of controlling the work as it develops whilst remaining open to taking risks and responding to chance occurrences along the way.
'We Were Walking In The Foothills'
Acrylic on board
500mm x 500mm #3050
Image created with #Insitu ArtRoom
My earlier paintings were a response to a specific experience in a landscape or city, during which I would make sketches and take photos. I would then make the painting over a period of time in the studio, revisiting the sketches and photos to remind me of the original experience. By remaining open to what happened along the way through the painting process, the aim was to allow each work to gradually take on a life of its own.
My studio is in Altrincham, Greater Manchester, UK, and the work currently varies in price from between £150 to £1000. I sell directly from my studio and also through the gallery, Saul Hay Fine Art, Manchester. If you are interested in any of the work that you see on this website, you can either contact me directly or follow the link to the gallery, shown below the painting.