I would never normally be caught using the dreaded “C” word before 1st December, but unfortunately the Teignmouth Art Society starts their Christmas Exhibition today, and if I leave mentioning it until 1st December, well it’s half over. A propos of which, I seem to have somehow got a near full page in the Devon Life “Arts” Section.
After that, it’s the Teignmouth Arts Action Group Christmas Exhibition (which at least has the good taste to leave it until 1st December to begin), and I have a 1.5m section of wall to fill. What to choose is difficult, especially for someone with just one winter picture to his name. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be hung on a wintery theme.
All of which brings me to the latest upload of paintings. First, there’s a small painting done partly in “plein air” and partly finished outside in Mallorca from sketches made at the time. It seems hard to believe that just 3 weeks ago I was painting outside in shorts and a tee shirt. Then there’s a new departure in the form of a mixed media abstract. This had its roots (as it turns out, quite literally) in the studio build. Building the deck access structure involved digging out some deep holes where some old laurel hedge had been, which yielded some interesting roots to work with. I have long been fascinated by the shapes and colour of the local sandstone cliffs and the red sand of Shaldon beach, and somehow the whole lot came together in the first of a series of paintings I have planned.
Finally, frugality and discomfort sometimes have benefits. My old friend George has the most wonderful canal boat, which is beautifully fitted out. Except, that is, for the “mattress”, which is 2″ of the cheapest foam one can find. This lies on solid wood. Sleep is pretty hard to come by in such circumstances (well at least for someone who was once described as being more fussy, bed-wise, than the princess and the pea), so I was up just before dawn. As everyone else was asleep (I have no idea how) I crept on deck with a camera and a sketch pad and watched the sun come up. The newt result is the “Reflections, Early Morning” painting which is now on display at TAAG.