A walk in the garden is so much more exciting if you can magically reduce your height and wander around underneath the plants. It gives you a whole new perspective on life.
I very seldom work in oils now. It’s not that I especially prefer acrylics – each has different ways of working, different finishes, advantages and disadvantages. It’s probably more to do with speed. I can turn out ten acrylic paintings (at least) to one painting in oils (I nearly said “Oil Painting” but that would be too grand for the quality I can achieve).
The other day I was trying to clear some space in my studio and chucking out a whole bunch of ancient boards and canvases with unequivocally failed attempts while I was learning about painting – what to do, and more often, what not to do. Most of these car-crash failures were in oils. Boards are one thing, however, but canvases are another and I couldn’t bring myself to dispose of a stretched canvas with only two or three previous attempts on it. Those attempts at least provided an interesting textured and suggestive background.
The subject came from two separate sketchbook drawings seamlessly joined together to make a whole new reality. Well, it was real to me.
“Things have come to a pretty pass,
Our romance has grown flat,
‘Cause you like this and the other,
And I go for this and that.
Goodness knows what the end will be,
Oh, I don’t know where I’m at,
It’s plain to see we two will never make one,
Something must be done.”
“A Pretty Pass“, Acrylics on paper, 42x59cm.
“You say either, and I say either,
You say neither, and I say neither,
Either, either, Neither, neither,
Oh, let’s call the whole thing off.”