I bloody hated this series when I first exhibited it. Who would have thought that use of the colour green could send someone into such a spiral of despair?
A conflict-avoiding people pleaser, I had done something (mildly) unexpected, and not only introduced mirroring that I had been desperate to play around with for ages, but I had ventured several degrees further around the colour wheel than I usually dared to go.
I had been inspired by landscapes, mainly in Yorkshire and Ireland, and the joining of bright greens with dusty heathers and the crisp blue of the sky was just so beautiful that I couldn’t resist working it into my art.
Some people didn’t like it. And as is the way with an Open Studios format, they told me so, to my face. And if I’m perfectly honest, it bruised my ego. I had struggled to complete the work, hanging the pieces to dry on a washing rack in my London bedroom, hot footed it up the East Coast Mainline and framed them all late at night, ready to hang the next day. And for what?
Well, now that a little time has elapsed, that seems like quite a good question. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I enjoy good feedback (and sales!) as much as the next artist, of course I do… but was a pat on the back form the public really why I was doing this?
I have a day job, I can (mostly) pay my bills, so why not experiment? Maybe this was the difficult second album, maybe some people preferred my old stuff, and maybe it didn’t matter.
Looking back at these paintings is like looking at photos of my teenage self. At the time I was so cruel, convinced I was a whale, beached in the suburbs of Leeds. Going through those pictures now, I would love to be as “big” as I thought I was then, and looking back at these paintings I find myself falling back in love with them too.
Do let your friends, your aunty and your neighbour know they’re still for sale though, because as much as I love them I’m about to move house, and I just don’t have the room any more!
For all sales, email: firstname.lastname@example.org