14 August 2009

Painting Changed My Life

Painting changed my life at a difficult time. It is dangerously addictive stuff, in the best possible way! If I don't get a chance to do something creative on a regular basis I am bad company. My late husband realising this was so, became one of my best supporters having at first resisted what he considered was a lightweight hobby.

My whole family have been very supportive, and my daughter especially so in a very practical way. Thanks to them all and to friends, each in their own way.

Perhaps my first memory of this world was the colour of forget-me-nots seen in a garden, and from then on colour has played an important part in my life and art.

At Junior School I particularly enjoyed the studies from the Old Testament of the Christian Bible, really because we were asked to illustrate colourful stories such as Joseph's coat of many colours and other exotic scenes. The stories from other spiritual cultures continue to inspire my work.

When family and other commitments arrived, creativity in that sense took a back seat and was channelled into motherhood for a number of years, although I continued to be interested in all the arts and especially painting. Women are said to be multi-taskers, and my creative life is like that. I change medium, subject, size, style, and everything else, depending on the subject matter, and, if it is one, commission. Usually I have several pieces on the go at the same time, some take years, but others can be done, often to order, very quickly. Going through old files and piles of paintings I was very surprised the other day to find that a theme I am still interested in was initiated about 12 years ago.

Painting is mostly a pleasure although for me it is not, as many people think, relaxing. Far from it, there is tension and frustration, fatigue and even despair.

A "history", by that I mean a list of exhibitions, is of little interest to me, as I am always thinking about the next piece of work. I have been fortunate enough to have travelled extensively. I have painted and exhibited in different countries, including England, Switzerland, the USA and France. My work is in homes (often called more grandly "private collections") across the globe. My most recent exhibition was in 2008 in France.

There are so very many things that make me want to capture some of the magic of the world and put my ideas on paper or canvas, wood or clay, and even embroidery, so back to work. I must concentrate..........

Hope you enjoy the selection on these pages....with comments on some of the pieces – please feel free to make your own.

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