The Series Folios
The title says it all. I always enjoy painting clouds and this series will feature big skies and diminished foregrounds.
Having painted my fictional mountain for several years now, I have decided to end the journey. "Bryn Evelyn" is loosely based on the Sugar Loaf and Skirrid Fawr mountains, under whose shadow I lived for a while. The approaches to the mountains are my own, and I have enjoyed painting the river valleys, the curiously shaped hills and the textured foregrounds. Sad to leave for good, because I know that many viewers have identified me with this series more than with anything else I have painted - but it is time to move on.
I have Scotland in mind for these. They are a series of paintings of lonely shores, wild blue mountains, and romantic sunsets. I hope to do more.
…these several paintings are based on my experiences of a very special place – a river estuary near Milford Haven in Pembrokeshire. Though it is such an inspiration and often in my thoughts, I have to admit that Graham Sutherland found it some 70 years before me! I have a map, with his instructions, showing where many of the major paintings were conceived, including the famous Entrance to a Lane. I enjoy painting the rocky foreshores and the lush vegetation, the light on the water in between, and the secret brooding land beyond. In all humility for the association, these are some of his observations, with which I associate so strongly:
I wish I could give some idea of the exultant strangeness of this place, for strange it certainly is; some people whom I know hate it, and I cannot but admit that it possesses an element of disquiet... the whole setting is one of exuberance – of darkness and light – of decay and life. Cattle crouch among the dark gorse. The mind wanders from contemplation of the living cattle to their ghosts. It is no uncommon sight to see horns lying bleached on the sand. Neither do we feel that the black-green ribs of half-buried wrecks and the phantom tree roots, bleached and washed by the waves, exist but to emphasize the extraordinary completeness of the scene.
The left bank as we see it is all dark – an impenetrable damp green gloom of woods which run down to the edge of low brackish moss-covered cliffs – it is all green save where the mossy lanes, which dive down to the opening, admit the sun, hinged, as it were, to the tops of the trees, from where its rays, precipitating new colours, turn the red cliffs on the right hand bank to tones of fire.
A fairly new group of paintings of the Somerset coast, inspired by Kilve and other such places. My shapes are wildly fantastic I know, but I like the idea of all the preserved evidence beneath the surface.
My latest series and probably the last one. These are all based, generally in an abstract way, on the several hill forts in Wiltshire and Dorset.
Figures in Landscape
I sometimes worry that my work is too devoid of life and habitation, so then I contrive to include a figure. This doesn't always work though, and in one or two paintings the figure appears or disappears with alarming frequency. As a rule, I like to depict the landscape as a dominant force over any human presence.