30 August, 2015

Still running up that bloody hill

I am working but I feel like I am working blindfolded. Painting by instinct. It is difficult to explain but I know that I need to continue this way for a while before I get a bit of clarity. I have these snippets of "getting it right" and then the whole thing slips away. It's like trying to focus on something thats barely visible out the corner of the eye.

 So painting, right now, is hard work. Nothing is coming easily. Actually, I lie when I say that as I HAVE been able to paint a few things that are commissions and such, and they have been straight forward. It's the stuff I WANT to paint that is difficult to winkle out of myself. I have been deconstructing as much as I have been constructing, but that feels like the path that I am supposed to be on.

I'm not sure I should be writing about all this. I think the labour of wrenching the paintings out of myself is supposed to be hidden, referenced only when looking at the fully formed result. Here  I am , wailing and describing it all to you in detail. o dear. But I have never been one to have quiet thoughts. I have always declared whatever was going on I'm my noggin as it happens. Immediate reporting. That leaves little time for second guessing or ever being called taciturn.I like to think I am decisive .I also accept that I can be wrong. A handy skill, that. So, with a literary shrug, I write that this is what today's thoughts are . Tomorrow might be a totally different tangent.

Laundry day SOLD

On a good note, Laundry Day sold at the Franklin Art Festival this past weekend. !

15 August, 2015

Running up that hill

I seem to be chasing my tail a bit at the moment. The chance, over the past 2 days, to spend some time in the studio, headphones on and painting, has been just wonderful. I downloaded Kate Bush( as you do) and listened to her 'Running up that hill" until I zoned out completely.

Don't get me wrong, the two days prior to them were spent swanning around New Zealand's capitol( political and cultural, it would seem) Wellington, enjoying all that such places entail these days: Galleries, exhibitions, museums, groovy shops, interesting architecture, great views, good coffee, better food, lots of people in black , smokers,students, street art and witty signs everywhere.I felt like I had straw in my hair and mud on my boots, a banjo somewhere in my bag.

I went to the Te Papa Museum and set the alarms off( it appears my scrutiny was closer than the alarms felt necessary). Actually, I did this a few times until a wonderful host called Dennis came over and spent the next hour allowing me to drag him all over the 5th floor as I demanded clarification on one point or other on the works displayed. He was a gem. Thank you Dennis. Ps, you had an awesome moustache .

Anyways, Wellington was wonderful and I wished I lived there because it reminded me so much of Cape Town. I practically inhaled as much culture as I could by talking to any and all front of house staff in the galleries and museums. They were all just lovely to me.

So, herewith some photos and then some photos of this weekends work, probably not in that order.

Avid Gallery

Mojo latte in Wakefield..thanks, Josh!

Birthday Boy at MonsoonPoon

Yeah, right.

John Badcock, Self portrait at NZ Portrait Museum.

Add caption

Toast , anyone?

Rita Angus..portrait of her husband. Ps, Frida phoned and wants her eyebrows back.

NZ style circa 1950's....and now.

eerily lit sea mammal skeletons.




02 August, 2015


I thought I would post the final image of what I ended up with. I often paint two paintings on one board, one beneath the other, upside down, whatever I feel suits the space. The upside down or out of focus image sits in my peripheral vision and allows me to work on it subconsciously. As I work simultaneously on both, I solve problems and plot my next move.

So, this is not a reflection, but two different images of the same street, one upside down from the other, all neighbours.

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