The Struggle for Something New
I was sitting in a small seaside village on the west coast of France last year (Granville), trying to extract some inspiration and direction for a new body of Art. In previous years I had painted oil on canvases and enjoyed it enormously. But each morning when I woke up and studied the pieces, I felt they missed the point.
In the days prior to Granville, I had gone back to the Musee D'Orsay in Paris, with a view of studying the works on the top floor from purely an analytical and technical point of view, and not that of an ogling tourist. The names didn't matter. At the end of 5 absorbing hours and a journal full of notes and studies, I caught the train west.
I sat in my hotel room for 4 days, analysing what I had written and what is was about certain works that appealed beyond the norm. Patterns emerged. Techniques were revealed. Themes unfolded. A new body of ideas was born.
A week later I was back in my studio on the Sunshine Coast and raring to explore these yet to be realised images. Ideas had yet to be given form. I had expected to continue working in paint, but thought initially, I could capture the necessary spontaneity and energy of my ideas rapidly, with charcoal and white pastel on brown Kraft paper, a handful of erasers to eradicate and cut back in with, and a clutch of 7B's for quick-fire mark making. Nothing fussy. Nothing precious.
The energy and fun that was lacking in those morning paintings, was to reveal itself.