Residency Day 2

Day 2

7th September

Saturday mornings are normally pancake mornings at home with my children, but this Saturday morning all I wanted to do was get back to the Tower and enjoy the new workspace, as three weeks will fly by before I know it.

The clarity and focus I feel in the Tower at Oriel y Parc is something that has been difficult to achieve in my shed at home.

The round space lends itself so well to what I require from a studio.

Plenty of light, curved walls which are interspersed with tables ( also curved to match the curve of the space) on which I can put different materials in an organised manner.

I even have a table in that space for sketch pad work and messing with water colour, and for reading and note taking.

On this second day using the Tower as my Studio I realised I needed to bring sandwiches as the rather deliciously smelling and tempting cafe is next door to the Tower, and very enticing.

My paintings from previous years are hanging on the wall next to the steps up to the Tower.

I put up photos of St Non’s for reference, looked through my sketch pads, stained two canvases, and also brought 3 more in from home.  I also put up some written research and the day before started to brain storm some of the key things about the story of St Non which jump out at me.

The key things are that she was raped, and that she gave birth to St David in a terrible storm.

I can’t help but feel enormously sorry for Nonnita, having to have endured giving birth to the child of rape, and to have given birth outside in a storm! On the coast!

I worked arbitrarily on oil paper today, trying to think about the pallet I want to use and looking at how the stains can work with each other.

I have become cautious about starting work on the canvases.

After I feel I have done enough work in the studio, I go back to St Non’s to do some loose quick sketches of the chapel and surrounding landscape. It is very important that I frequently sketch this subject as getting to know it through observation will mean that through that visual familiarity I can allow it to surface in the mark making staining process.  Often what I think I am doing unconsciously is actually a reinterpretation of what I have been observing intently, and by working like this without copying images, I get to also express another unspoken quality that happens in the act of painting.