And now for something completely different…

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DSCF8699v2Page 17 Girl

2016, acrylic

Inspired by the intense, beautiful, bittersweet and confident Marlene Dumas retrospective at the Tate Modern earlier this year – “The Image as Burden”.

“There is no beauty, if it doesn’t show the terribleness of life.”

M.D

Marlene D

The Painter

Marlene Dumas, 1994

Sunshine Sketchbook

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Ilovesunshine (612x800)

I Love Sunshine

Pencil, 2013

 

I love sunshine, more than you could ever imagine. It smells of spring and I am happy.

One For Sorrow – Magpie Painting

Magpies

One For Sorrow, Two For Joy

Ink and watercolour, 2016

A fathers day painting for my daddy. I do like a good magpie (or two) – such intelligent birds, they always look like they’re plotting, pondering what to do next…

The intention was to paint a beautiful, detailed perfect magpie card – this A3 page started off as a mess of practice sketches! As is so often the way, when I came to working on the “real” picture, I just couldn’t get him to look right… all sorts of peculiar-looking pigeons and penguins were appearing on the paper. So back I went and added some gorgeous colour and splodgy ink to this page – really chuffed with this picture, and I think my father likes it too. It is now up in my parents kitchen; high praise indeed.

 

 

We Made A Tent Rosette

rosette_v2

We Made A Tent, 2011

Hand-made rosette

I was approached by the Fashion and Textile Museum in London following my degree show in 2011, and went on to sell work through their shop. Some of this work was a series of rosettes – commemorative, awards for the little things; signifying important parts of time that have passed. Time that has been lived through. Badge of honour. A cathartic underlining of events. And move on.

I wonder if this is worth exploring again…?

We made a tent. Everything is ok. 

Uncomfortable Orange Paintings

Cadmium VI and Cadmium VII, 2015

Acrylic, A5

I tried something different, took a step outside of my comfort zone. It must have been a sunny day. These paintings are the wrong tone, the wrong colour. They do not suit me. Back I went to blues and reds…


A Dark Painting

Cadmium XI

Cadmium XI, 2016

Acrylic, A3

Mist. Oppressive haze. Something a little bit sinister.

With an arbitrary title. I need a new system.

 

Little Queen – Embroidery

Embroidery. 2009.

“Little Queen”

Embroidery, 2010

Self-portraiture; this tells a story. A sketch of muddled thoughts, sewn without over-thinking. A satisfying way to work, it is nice to look over old art; funny how it all joins together (and sometimes makes sense).

Faint heart never won fair lady. 

When to stop painting…

DSCF9492Two studies – acrylic paint, 2016

I started this pair of paintings side by side, with the intention of mirroring, a sort of butterfly effect. I ended up spending much more time on the left-hand painting… to its detriment.

I much prefer the more minimalist left hand painting, which took only a few minutes, simple brush strokes, beautiful colours – the paint moved across the paper, bled, arranged itself serendipitously and left a lovely splodge.

How can a couple of minutes work look so much better than half an hour of laboured painting?! And will everyone else see the same as me?

That has always been The Big Question – when to stop painting? When have you over-worked an ruined a once delicate, understated, confident piece of work? How on earth do you know when to stop? I guess it all comes down to intuition. And experience. Practice (and plenty of frustrating mistakes, screwed up sketchbook pages. There’s no going back.)

Stop before you think you need to stop.

 

Cadmium II – Recent Work

Cadmium II - E Tann

Cadmium II (2016)

Acrylic

Very much an experimental piece. Horizontal brush strokes, cross-based composition (I’ve been playing around this for a while), and of course beautiful white blank paper and the usual muted palette. The painting exists on the surface of the paper, the paper is part of the work, not simply a material for the paint to rest on, an after thought; the painting isn’t the object. There is a difference. I’m not certain that makes sense – must work on my articulation. Maybe another day.