HI EVERYBODY!!!! waving! hi hi! yay! I know I’ve popped in and out a bit over the week, but I missed you guys!


Where to start, one wonders. I had a feeling this week was going to be interesting (to me at least!), and I was right. I may not have all the answers I was hoping for (it was only a week! and this is me we’re talking about), but I learned some cool, and more importantly USEable stuff about myself, my work and the way I work. Which was kind of the point of the whole exercise.

There was frustration, aha moments, total inertia, frenzied note making, and three days where I didn’t paint at all! That’s right, almost half my immersion week involved not actually painting.
So the things I learned. This might have to span a few posts as all kinds of things came up. A few basics first. (A star means it’s more important.)

1. Acrylic inks make GREAT drippy drawings.

2. You can definitely overdo the drips.

*3. I want to tell STORIES, not paint pretty pictures. For a long while I was satisfied with making something that was aesthetically pleasing. Now I want it to MEAN something.

4. I don’t have to or need to or even necessarily want to paint every single day. (bit disappointed about that actually)

5. The desk in my studio is GREAT for sitting and thinking, and then writing down what I’ve been thinking about. (Awkward; the studio is meant to be for painting in.)

Sometimes I also have to mess with my phone camera a little bit; I did NOT KNOW I COULD DO THIS!
*6. If/when I have an idea, it’s generally best to get it down straight away, because notes never hold the secret of what the idea was really about when I go back to them. I have no doubt that some true masterpieces have been lost to the world because I thought ‘oh I’ll do it later’. Case in point; I made some notes about an incredible circle painting I wanted to do inspired by a book I was reading. Now when I look at the notes I don’t know what I was talking about.

7. It is totally ok and extremely likely that every painting will have a stage where I hate it and can’t see a way through (ie. Ugly Phase), and that sometimes it doesn’t in fact make a better painting at the end of it.

8. I absolutely must draw more. As much as I despise most of the marks I make, every now and then something quite good comes out and I can use it in my paintings. (more on this later)

*9. My painting is starting to become about the thoughts I’m having, ideas sparked by the books I’m reading, and I suppose really the way I’m looking at the world these days. (more on this also another time)

10. I spent quite a while sitting on my stairs looking at my ‘gallery’ and noticed that aside from a penchant for rich colour, circles, text, collage and glazes, I also seem to divide my canvases up in some way or other, often into surprisingly angular sections.11. Inspiration can come from anywhere. Like rug colours in Habitat for example.12. Ok this is not new information but MAN I can procrastinate with the best of them. My process would appear to be all or nothing, drought then splurge, so I’m just gonna roll with that.

All of this is up for change. We are changing all the time so habits and behaviours change too. (Thank goodness.)

This is a bit scrappy but my thoughts are still bouncing about all over the shop. If you can picture the three sheets of A3 scribble-and-diagram-covered paper at my side right now you know what I’m sayin.