Saturday 30 January 2016

30.01.2016 Saturday

Not finished anything, just opened more complications; started a new one which I thought would clean the intellectual palette but turned out to confuse me further.

...The Tumbling Nude now has four balls of colour which may be instrumental in the fall but also seriously aid the composition. Possibly interesting but not sure how it'll shape up and serious impasto has to dry before I can restart.

Leto and the Frogs is nearly there. Fiddled with the leading frogs' arm and shoulder and like the resolution but its compromised the rest of the painting. Accordingly have changed Apollo and Artemis and thats good too but again, compromised the rest. Need to let it all settle - been hitting it with the irredescents - can't see the direction

New one based on a painting I saw somewhere that I assumed was by Watteau. So like Watteaus' whites - the blue and pink shimmering ones (like the veil in The Bride, John Bellanys painting that we bought last time there was some money) Researching the Watteau I discovered it wasn't - it was by Lancret and here it is... attracted by the dancing girl and the strange old bloke thats holding her in some way. Bunged in a dog because Lily has been to the vets with an unusable leg and its worrying me.
Laid out the pix and enjoying it when it occured to me to look up what I'm doing. I think its all from the commedia dell'arte and I fear its about fathers and daughters.
--- Early days.

Tuesday 26 January 2016

26 01 2016 Tuesday

Getting very doubtful about my progress. Feel like I'm illustrating a girls comic (albiet rather well). Back to <Art; What is it Good For?>

Spoke on Skype to Toby Churton who is having his own creative struggles. Whilst talking I remembered the time I decided the life of an artist was for me. I was probably 14, newly in love and following the adored one up the hill on my bicycle.We'd been in Cobham, talking about the future; he was studying hard, expecting to get to university and study agronomy in order to save the world. I thought, all I have is time. And Im not selling it until I've spent it.

Over the many years since this has led to some internal confusions about productivity and the nature of life.

Will finish the current pic of Leto and the toads (=dont want to do frogs, too green) and start getting serious. Feels too slick, pretty, small, boudoir-esq.

The Adored One, Nick, got to Reading and then postgraded at somewhere in the North - have forgotten, despite having gone there with him. Published papers, did good, moved to NZ with a lectureship. Where he killed himself after his wife and kids left him, apparently bi-polar, untreated, isolated.. ach. The older you get the more memories are shaded by black.

Monday 25 January 2016

26 01 2016

using a dreadful drawing of Tabbitha.

Drawing still piss poor, why?? Today's models Nessim, whom I do not enjoy working with, and a new partner, who was great and kept Nessim from acting up.Only two outbreaks of bad behavoir and the partner contained them. Charming, actually - the love between them both palpable.
-Drawing crap, however.


Sunday 24 January 2016

25th jan 2016 monday

 work slow on account of there will be a toilet fitted in the studio on Weds., which means I've had to clear the space where it will go - and here it is. Nice to see the wall again (portfolios and frames there, now rationalised elsewhere) I forget that this place is 400 years old. Rather comforting. And here is Tango sitting on a basket of oyster shells that I use as mixing bowls. He's taken to insisting on company which is fine as long as he dosent sit on my shoulder when I'm painting.
off to draw this morning - Nessim and his partner.

Friday 22 January 2016

22.01.2016 Friday night

Been to Narbonne, overnighted - was delighted with my energy, the new meds are superb, I could walk and see art all day without fatigue. Not much to see though, so far from the season; but the collection at the top of the Bishops Palace was fine and totally deserted so a long time available to examine and enjoy. Saw a Jan de Beer which rather set me quivvering; nice sigils enclosed.
And this, Andrea Locatelli - Leto transforming the peasants into frogs. Had to look up the story - never heard it - done my own version.

While I was working on that, did a version of a frog prince being kissed - only the kisser is turning into a frog. Was telling PS and he said, would have been a female frog... 
Good time for work, not too many interuptions, health sound and spirit cheerful.
Off to read Ovid. It seems that Transformations are my thing.

Have spent quite a lot of time printing off my work diary from last year. This has become something of a ritual, a check on the annual output. Inn terms of volume, piss poor - Ive lost a couple of years to asthma, I reckon. It would help if I thought that I'd gained in contemplation, wisdom, whatever; but its clear this is not so. Alas. Wonder if you can suffer permanent brain damage from inadequete oxygen supply? Don't feel especially stupid and  I can concentrate again, for long periods.Guessing I'd be the last to know.

Sunday 17 January 2016

17.01.2016 sunday

Cleaned brushes. Photographed some pix and chooose 2 to submit to RA summer show, despite the usual caveats - the more so after the Nat Art expo. After paying, getting shortlisted, paying for the work to get to the selectors, geting rejected and  paying for it to come back, you'd think I'd learn -
Cleaned out the parrot cage.
Drawing tomorrow then on Tuesday and Weds In off to Narbonne in search of a motif :)

Friday 15 January 2016

15 01 2016

Spent the entire day - minus a lengthy lunch - reorganising my CV. How depressing is that. But its done. 8 pages to cover 50 years graft.
The day is overcast and wet and the light crap. Says it all really. Very glad Im off to see Star Wars tonight or would be settling to a deep depression.

Wednesday 13 January 2016

13 01 2016 Weds

Bastard day. Wide awake all night - got up and reorganised my CV for a few hours - still wide awake at the normal getting-up time. Quite happy in the night, it was only at noon that the tiredness hit and hasn't gone away.

Lack of motif an issue. Since my usual method is to take a drawing or drawings and paint them till they lead into wherever it is that they will go, the sense that drawing is crap is a real problem.
But decided to face it fair and square.
Took Mondays' screwed- up drawings from the bin, chose the worst and started to work from it. It works better in paint though too early to tell if its got legs. As it were.

One of the outcomes of sealing up and disposing of notebooks is a reduction of sources -

Been fiddling with the Tumbling Girl and thats shaping up better. Nothing to do but go with it.

Bieke is in town - met her while waiting for the local police to do some admin on the little house. She is refusing to work, after her recent show in Italy that she hated. Made a deal of sense, reminding me of how much time is spent in admin to be able to get to do the little work we get to do in order to humiliate and torture ourselves. Lalala.   I feel more positive than that but I do a deal less admin (used to do three aftos a week when in London but don't now, not chasing shows though  probably should be)
Her plan is to get rid of stuff and see how she feels then.

Mine is to do more admin., probably. Get CV and catalogues out  - only space I can think of that I like is the Jerwood, is it worth the loss to approach  them? Nothing to loose but the costs. Will think on't.

Light has gone and Im giving up on today as a bad lot. Tomorrow is ghastly Thursday, Friday disrupted with social stuff. Weekend clear.

Tuesday 12 January 2016

12 01 2016 Tuesday

Actually not sure about the date, computer says 12 and portable says 13th - dosen't matter -
finished this brute, with a weary sense of inevitability rather that of success. Not being able to draw has hit me hard, now I'm wondering if I can't paint either. 
I mean, drawing is often crap but its never before been just bad.

12 01 2016 Tuesday

Yesterdays' drawing quite startlingly bad; no idea why, except perhaps that I was tierd. Pre-dawn walk to feed hens, hour and a half painting before the drawing; yes, that would tire me. Perfectly sweet model called Tabbitha who could move as well as stay still. Many other artists there, around 17  - maybe the slightly crampedness got to me. Excuses, excuses - I am curious though, I haven't drawn this badly for several years. Will keep this one in case its useful. The rest are in the bin.

Painting goes well after the bluescrumble disaster.

Sat the thing in the studio and looked at it, having slept with it all week. Eventually decided to emphasise the emerging story of vanquished angels and big up the hat of the goddess, whereupon she turned into the Statue of Liberty; nearly.
Always liked that that statue came from France.
Looks like a cross between the S of L and an Indian diety though of course it is Greek. Ish.
Lala. Nearly there though.
Light very bad, weather gloomy and dark. Using electric lights, don't trust them

The tumbling girl may be a lost cause.

The new canvases remain virgin.

Friday 8 January 2016

08 01 2016 Friday

Early morning was enough time to finish the satyr pic. So pleased:) It isn't really finished but it does all I want it to and any more is overworking, filling in, fiddling, whatever.
It's a while since I've done a painting that I've wanted to keep near me but this is one. Really I suppose to find out why it works and what it's doing, It poses some loverly questions about the observor and the observed.

Shopping; bought a dozen canvases and have gessoed them all, an impossible state of affairs a while ago. New drugs amazing. Did them all in 2 hours - would have been 2 days before.

Needed black paint, ochre paint. Black is bizarre - imagine not having any black? - especially as Asker Jorns maxim, when in doubt use black, is close to my practice. (Was it Jorn? One of the Cobra lot anyway) I've been mixing it but the dead black of lamp black has been fretting me - and knowing that ochre was  running low also makes me too judicious in its use. Loads now. AND hurrah my favorite irredescent paints which are getting harder and harder to find were on sale, 3 for 2. Bought what I could. They are clearly not re-stocking anywhere so Im guessing this line is over and my stocks will have to see me out.

Thursday 7 January 2016

07 01 2016 Thurs

...the problem with the undersea goddess* one is the hideous disparity between foreground and the rest. Only solution I can think of is a damart and phylocyanide scrumble which should help - have to wait for it to dry properly first. And the satyr one needs a deal of fiddling - the bottom and foot of the photographer, the legs and outline of the satyr, plus I think his camera is at the wrong angle.

But But but its thursday. Housework day. There are few things more depressing than the prospect of a days housework. But on the plus side I don't do it any other day.

*Forgot to say that my source was 2 photos snapped on a mobile camera in Paris - Grand Palais, I think - at an expo of undersea discoveries there. Went with Therese whos dead a few years now. Had them put onto paper in Woolwich at the Snappit Shop. Felt like very advanced technology at the time.
Have developed the images several times but never painted it in before, I don't think - its all tied in with Therese and accordingly rather hard to manage.

Later; Can't manage to scan the photos but have re-photo'd and here they are - Therese dimly in the background of one - green rings a mystery, ditto luminous eyes.
House clean. No work done.  Asthma baddish. Tomorrow busy with stuff ( buying materials, chiefly) apart from the early morning - but next week clear.

Wednesday 6 January 2016

06 01 2016

looks somewhat garish in this image, but hey - resolved the story anyway, hope its not too cartoony.

Tuesday 5 January 2016

05 01 2016 tues

 coming on... heres a detail from the top corner.
Tumbling nude also progressing. Satyr totally going no where.

Monday 4 January 2016

04 01 2016 monday

Ongoing... sometimes better, sometimesworse, this is where I left it this evening. 
Light has gone on account of its cloudy and wet
Started early and quit just before 10.00 to draw, in haste so just picked up what came to hand - graphite blocks (xmas pressie from Nel) and notepaper. Patrice modelling, nice group of people there. Comfortable. Alas, these are the best of a bad bunch - bogged down in the fun of graphite, I fear. 

Enjoyed dating 2016, the first this year.