Can you tell us about the creative process you go through when painting?
That first day I started to paint really harked back to my training as a dancer and a photographer - having to be so technically astute, decisive and surprisingly methodical to actually be able to let go and be free as an artist, free to create. What was most important though, which grew through the many years of training, is the instinct of knowing when to stop. To instinctively trust that your creation is, right now, at it’s best. This forms the basis of everything I do.
Time and place is so important for me as I really need to delve and be ‘in the zone’, finding that sweet zen spot where I’m supported by the space I’m in. I have a natural eye for design, so my studio spaces are always beautiful and welcoming with eclectic furniture, lots of plants, plenty of art from other artists, loads of natural light, essential oils burning and great music playing - of course with good set of speakers to assist in cranking the volume. The spaces I work in really appeal to all of my senses allowing me to be in a comfortable, groovy place, where my mind is open and ready to create. I describe my painting process as a dance, using the music to guide me. I’ll listen to the same piece of music, the same album, over and over, working on one painting until it’s finished. I let the music ride over me, absorbing it and harnessing the energy.
My works align with a Dadaist philosophy, utilising ‘laws of chance’ in my method and creating works that can never be replicated. The Dada chain of thought is “to destroy the hoaxes of reason and to discover an unreasoned order.” I paint with no plan or expectation and really take this on the Dada approach by starting to work with the paint, grabbing whatever colour is jumping out at me, inline with the energy of my movements - it’s literally a dance with the canvas as I rely on my natural instinct to ‘play’ with the colours, forms and textures as I procure them on the canvas.
Every painting is different - I might use big brushes and lay down all over colour, filling up the canvas, or I might throw paint straight at the canvas. I love mixing up colours to create my own palette, it feels like the colours I produce have never existed before; seeing how dragging paint or making marks with random implements or by using my hands unfolds on the canvas. Yep, I’m generally covered in paint from head to toe by the time I finish!
Not much changes whether I’m painting indoors or outdoors. I work all my paintings in the round, so I continuously move around them painting, having a groove, noticing how the light hits them, turning them to explore gravity, making paint run to create interesting organic forms. As such there is no correct way to hang my paintings, literally no ‘top edge’ to them. They actually work being hung anyway up, ‘the right way up’ is purely what appeals to you the most. They can look really different depending which way they are hung and I want people to have a play to see what works for their sensibilities.