I don’t want to over-explain any of my paintings, but on the other hand I like to give a context and some pointers. You may note the obvious theme of mortality in this still life!
What about the odd jumble of birds on the seat? Much of our knowledge of nature/wildlife has come at a cost. Before the second half of the twentieth century it was common for scientists to kill animals in order to study them. Even my hero, Charles Darwin, did this on a grand scale. Audubon – the American bird artist – shot birds in order to paint them. We are more compassionate nowadays but there is still massive exploitation of wildlife in many other ways.
I painted this self portrait in 1966 when I was 20! At the time I liked Stanley Spencer’s self portrait with its full frontal stare! If you look closely at the right shoulder you should be able to see a fly. I added this in the year 2000 to try and suggest the transience of life- a kind of momento-mori!
This is my 100th blog.
As you can see, I’m still unearthing old paintings I still have. There may be more to post.
This is a painting I did way back in 1966 of my (then) French girlfriend. That’s 49 years ago when I was 20! Oh, where are you now Annick? One of the lecturers at college, who saw it, had the audacity to say he could see an expresssion of love in the painting!
All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and entrances. And one man in his time plays many parts. His acts being seven ages.
As the weather in the UK has been warm and spring-like I’ve posted this painting of mine which has ‘summery’ bright colours. I like the use of colours by the Expressionist painters, especially Franz Marc and this painting is probably influenced by that fact! Like all my paintings on my blog this was painted a number of years ago. You can click to enlarge the image.
Some of the signs of spring here are toads in pairs waddling along footpaths, chiffchaff and skylarks singing and peackcock butterflies flying. On the quayside (on theTyne Bridge) the kittiwakes are well into incubating their eggs. It is one of the furthest, if not the furthest, inland kittiwake colony in the world. I haven’t seen any swallows yet.
from a newly minted glossary
Blackberry a glossy substitute
for juicy blackberries
acid slipping between leaves
like dandelion seeds
like cremated bones
[I wrote this poem in response to reading that a children’s dictionary was no longer going to feature a number of words to do with the natural environment. In their place would be words from socia media. I also wanted the poem to link somehow with my painting.]
I’ve been doing an online course about the Gothic and Fantasy in Literature. So far we have discussed The Brothers Grimm, Frankenstein, Dracula, Edgar Allan Poe and HG Wells. I came across this small sketch of mine and thought it was quite Gothic with the castle in the background and the formal gentleman doffing his hat. And of course you could invent a narrative about the two people! Is it a father waving goodbye to his daughter as she goes into the castle to be a governess or are the two people lovers? Is it Dracula’s castle perhaps? What is the mood of the drawing?