Going it alone…..


…really enjoying exploring creative ideas on my own! This collage of the hyacinth bulbs was fun to do – it evolved over a number of days as I explored new and different ways of expressing my response to the image.  There are several layers of added papers of different textures, painted before gluing them to the surface. I painted the bulbs on top of the collage surface.  However this didn’t seem to give the image I wanted so I ripped many of the papers off and it was very interesting to see the colours which were left.  It also helped to portray the papery surfaces of the bulbs where the outer skin was peeling off.  I learnt a lot through this study.

As I said in a previous blog, I want to use this time between courses to establish myself as a painter without the course structure around me.  I am so pleased that it is proving a most exciting time, full of ideas and a freedom to discover just what it is I am doing.

I have started to record ideas for paintings as they come to thought and I am amazed at the wealth of material all around me. This is strange because I have found very often in the course that finding the material can be a problem..perhaps the sense of freedom and confidence which I am feeling as an artist is producing the flow of ideas…something to remember!

I’m also catching up on reading! During the course, I find it difficult to read widely as well as complete the work for the course study. I usually have several books on the go at any time. On a recent trip to Tate Modern I bought several books on Collage techniques and these are proving wonderful resources for developing my understanding of this medium which I love.  I have also just finished a  book on Kurt Jackson called “Kurt Jackson – a New Genre of Landscape Painting”….just loved this book!  He is one of my favourite painters…love his energy and use of paint!  The book was particularly interesting because it consisted of 11 essays, written by individuals who knew him and his work.

Other books on the go….

Gombrich’s Story of Art…half way there!….really enjoy this book with its extensive gallery of paintings

Ways of Seeing- John Berger – great book!

Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition by Robert Rosenblum – just started this as I wanted to know more about the romantic movement. I think it will give me an insight into what I am doing…

This brief interlude between courses is also giving me time for exhibitions.  I went to the Edvard Munch exhibition at Tate Modern and surprised myself at how much I enjoyed it. This taught me how important it is to see paintings which you don’t really like. I learnt a huge amount about his life and what motivated him in his work…still don’t like the paintings but somehow that doesn’t seem important.

Loved the Ballgown exhibition at the V&A…it was a glimpse into another age and way of life as well as giving me a visual feast of colours, shapes and possibilities.  I always love going to the V&A whatever the exhibition…the place just breathes design and learning and I feel so at home!

The other gallery I love to go to is the Courtauld which has the most fabulous collection of Impressionists.  I loved a recent exhibition there called ‘Mantegna to Matisse: master drawings from the Courtauld Gallery’….excellent seeing the drawings which inspired such wonderful paintings.

I think the time spent in this kind of personal study is allowing me to absorb so much that is inspiring new thought.  I am amazed at how much I am enjoying my ‘gap’ months.


About pbfarrar

I am an Australian living permanently in England. I have recently retired from the position of Principal of an independent school and have taken up the study of Fine Art with the OCA.
This entry was posted in Log notes - OCA - Painting 1. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Going it alone…..

  1. Mags Phelan says:

    Thanks to this post, I went in search of Kurt Jackson… how marvellous his work is! Very glad your time is proving to be so inspiring.

  2. lifeartnotes says:

    ..perhaps the sense of freedom and confidence which I am feeling as an artist is producing the flow of ideas…something to remember! – You’re an inspiration – I hope that I will feel the same sense of freedom and confidence in my artwork one day!

  3. Mags Phelan says:

    I’ve nominated you for “One Lovely Blog Award”, for writing one of the blogs that most inspires me. (See here: http://magsphelan.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/one-lovely-blog-award/)

    If you’d like to accept, write seven random things about yourself, and nominate other bloggers who inspire you!

  4. Lynn says:

    Just found your blog, although seen your work on the OCA site. Your work is inspirational. I am doing POP and struggling to find my own voice – I love your work, including the sketchbooks. Good luck with the assessment – not that you’ll need any!

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