Arriving at this pivotal point in my life, I have just launched fresh paintings with an immense feeling of satisfaction whereby I feel as if I am emitting a glow. A place in my life where my painting practice and skills have been have equally strengthened when only a few years ago I was unsure if I would ever paint again. I am excited by my painting compositions which have developed through representational layers and practiced techniques. Through exploration in my studio sessions my paintings I have become interested in exploring the essence of elusiveness in the quiet stillness of brief moments.
These paintings explore themes such as the relationship with the self, elusiveness, time and stillness through the vessel of moments. My relationship with myself has reached cohesiveness, practising as an artist these past few months has been self rewarding, enriching and healing. Which has supported the development of enigmatic distinctive paintings exploring bold colour, deconstructed form, symbolism and typography that depict brief moments in my life. Painting elusive moments has given my life purpose and meaning which equally has driven me over the past few months.
My journey to here is a story which I feel is important to the understanding my new paintings titled Luminous Moments. A story which revealed itself to me only recently as I was beginning to explore developing this new body of work. When I first became chronically ill several years ago now, many of my bodily systems became broke without repair. The most challenging system to master remotely was my fight and flight response, being that it was constantly out of order. It became clear quickly that if I couldn’t repair this I would never be going back to my old life. Eventually clarity set in realizing my life as I knew it was gone forever and I was forced to rethink and bring change to every moment in my new one. I achieved this through brief moments of time.
In the early days what brought me some peace once and awhile was stillness within moments, but it was elusive. In the beginning it was frustratingly elusive. I was presented with very few of these moments and left in a constant state of chaos inside my body, which was rather concerning at times. However, becoming present within moments of stillness became my good friend over time. Not just stillness in my body but stillness all around me. I had to learn how to create an environment of stillness which took time as it was elusive presenting itself for only brief periods of time. Stillness in reference to the quiet, settled, peaceful and tranquil.
Beginning from the inside meaning within my body and mind I turned to breathing, mindfulness and mediation techniques to learn how to control my stillness. With much dedication and practise I learned how to control my inner stillness from upon waking through to sleep. Although it did require a complete edit of my life as I knew it and a significant amount of deleting of various things from that said life. I have established daily practice whereby I am able to control the chaos through a personally designed remote control specifically for me.
Outside of myself was more challenging, I began creating a controlled environment with much stillness over a period of many years. Places to go inside my home and outside in my garden to experience moments of stillness. I began recognizing stillness found in nature and would find myself sitting in quiet with flowers for long periods of time. The digital age of today I learned with time I am simply not made for especially living with this changed body. The world is the opposite of stillness, it is not regarded highly to be still in ones life. The best strategy I found for myself was living housebound, not only to keep stillness but to prevent health flares from various chronic illness and more importantly to promote storage of elusive energy reserves which are in constant low levels. My broken body solved the problem of outer stillness for me. The gift I received was like no other and stillness became less elusive over time.
I live mostly with inner stillness now, I am still broken but I know how to stimulate the stillness within if things begin to become unsettled which is rare given my boundaries. Mostly though I live in a peaceful state within boundaries that generates stillness in moments. Anything which effects my inner stillness is not tolerated, not even a little bit. It is this stillness that I talk about today that I find in moments that inspire paintings. These moments of stillness are what generated my healing, kept me from becoming extremely unwell, guide me to my authentic nature through analog living and inspire my art which in return gives me purpose in life.
With an interest in exploring the essence of elusiveness in the quiet stillness of brief moments my greatest gift has been given to me. It took years to develop my painting practice and establish on a body of work which had deep meaning to my life such as Luminous Moments, my new paintings. I suppose there is always a period of time for a clearing to present itself, my moments were too brief early on to see. Gaining longer moments of stillness allowed for a clearer vision, moments are becoming less elusive with time. There is no surprise to me how my interest in the relationship with the self has become an important theme in my new paintings. My paintings are boldly visible in contrast to living a life which is truly invisible and has become my voice as an introverted empath which is the truest sense of my unique daily experience.
There are two pieces within my paintings that deserve to be part of my story. With fondness I have included typography as seen in writing, thoughtfully incorporated into each composition. I discovered in the new year I was unable to practice separately painting and writing, and thus I have woven my writing into my painting process which absolutely tickles me pink. Through writing I find words to convey the moment which inspired the painting, with the final piece of writing being typed on my midcentury Royal typewriter. I have long explored typography in my art through the decades, finally it made its way into these new paintings. You can read this piece of writing below as seen in italic type.
Interestingly, in the past few years I simply didn’t have energy when I finished painting to properly title my paintings. Although disappointing, I learned early on to accept limitations no matter what. I felt that in time with less elusive moments I would write exciting titles. With my new paintings titles came to me organically through the written piece taken from the moment that inspired the painting. As a life long lover of the word I love this method of titling my paintings. This is how these new paintings were titled Luminous Moments, read the next passage to see how the painting titles developed for this series.
‘A vase of lovestruck light pink tulips with luminous green stems offered peaceful moments as I rested in a cozy armchair. It had been a grey January with no sunlight, persistent rain storms replaced snow squalls. A surprise on one of those strangely rainy days was a bouquet of beautiful cut tulips from my kind partner who always has me in his thoughts. The armchair was chosen carefully as I was awaiting a breakthrough of warm sun. The tulips offered a reminder of the bright sunny days to come in spring, hope. Although it was an unusually grey January my spirits remained bright. Moments of inspiration happened in the quiet observation of the tulips and spontaneous loose pencil sketches revealed new ideas and possibilities. I was left sitting in rest with a keen feeling for what was to come, I suppose you might say I was lovestruck.‘
White paint makes a strong return in this body of work trapping the bottom of each composition, not unlike the the virus trapped within me. The daily elusiveness of energy is represented through white, always in control of me from within yet invisible. The white in my paintings representing myself. I have long explored the use of white paint in my paintings, each body of new work exploring it in a new way. It is with the same clear mind that I uncovered what white means in my paintings. I had explored this early on in my recovery with a different technique, however I wasn’t satisfied with the use of it in the composition. In my garden paintings I used white at the top of my paintings, by moving it to the bottom it was clear that white is representative of me and the elusive energy living within. This discovery has given me a great sense of relief as though it was waiting for me to uncover it.
I look forward to where my experiences with the elusive stillness of brief moments will take me, I do know it will inform my paintings. I continue onward with my studio sessions and painting practice and will share fresh paintings whenever I can. Join me on this forward moving journey through moments as I make my way in life, all my paintings are for sale please contact me if interested.
One thought on “How I Began Painting Elusive Moments”
I love the bull terrior photo omg are they best friends, can’t imagine having two bully one was enough for me lol, you are truly a gre