‘You would never have thought that Romance and Modernism would go together but this exhibition proves that they can. I will never look at motorways in the same way again. Wonderful!’
That was a very pleasing comment left in the comments book at the exhibition, where I have spent the day. Here’s another:
‘What a load of old rubbish in Gallery One’.
Just in case I was going to let things go to my head…!
I’m pleased with the show anyway. It feels good to reflect on the work a bit. I feel after about four years of different attempts and false starts, I’ve finally created my first serious body of landscape painting, which not only am I pretty pleased with, but, despite the numerous influences that bubble away under the surface, actually feels like it belongs to me.
I decided to frame a few of my charcoal and pastel drawings and some small oil paintings on paper, with the hope that it may appeal more widely and be more accessible in terms of price and scale- and it worked! I sold three of them, which helped cover some of my costs. I don’t make things easy for myself in terms of any commercial value in my work, I just make the work I need to do, but the drawings are an important part of my process, and I felt they looked lovely framed up, so I need to heed this lesson and make more and try and get them out to some commercial galleries. I think they will appeal in a way the paintings just never will.
Ironically, I felt the only painting that didn’t work in the show was the large trees one that I used on the flyers and posters! I discussed this with someone on Saturday, who felt that the smaller one next to it’s ‘clenched’ energy was far more successful. I have to say I tend to agree. I had previously done a different large version of this that I rejected for this show, but think I made the wrong choice in selecting the larger piece. Oh well, some you win…which takes me back to the comments at the top.