Day 12

This was my last full day painting in the Tower.

I found myself overworking the painting I had been working on Tuesday, becoming obsessed with a line, putting it on and taking it off, and putting it back on and taking it back off again. I’m still not satisfied, and for some reason I am niggled by it when no one else can even notice what I have been doing.

I worked on the final painting but managed to keep it loose open and free.

A friend came to visit in the morning and a visitor from a last week,Jeremy, popped in this afternoon, whilst I was in the throes of ‘this line is ruining the WHOLE painting’. When I get like this I had best just walk away but it was my last day, so I didn’t do that. At least I made some progress on the other painting.

My actual residency finishes on the 29th  September, but I have work tomorrow, and Saturday and Sunday I will spend packing up, taking down the exhibition in the cafe and preparing the new work for hanging in the ‘Celebration of Contemporary Welsh Painting’ exhibition opening on the 4th October.

I think my main frustration was thinking that the newest painting – ‘On this level space at that time of her conception two great stones appeared…’ might not work with the other paintings I was planning to put into the exhibition.

For some reason I couldn’t leave it alone.  I frustrate myself when I do this. I know I need to walk away but I won’t. It’s all part of the process, and I am sure I will resolve what is bothering me another day.

The final painting which has no name has remained open, free, light and moveable.

I want to keep it as open as this, I might stain the a little more, but generally I would like to keep this painting as open and delicate as it now is.

Yet again, I have done what I always do, and start over working one whilst retaining the purity and delicacy of another.

I must accept this is one aspect of me and my process that just doesn’t go away because I am working somewhere new.

In fact, I have pretty much played out all my working patterns within this condensed 3 week residency but have been mainly stronger with myself about leaving a painting be, with the help of all the visitors that have come in and commented.

I am enormously sad it is coming to an end.

I have needed the focus so much in my painting practise, the focus of the Chapel and the story of St Non. There is still so much opportunity for more work and research,  part of me wants to keep producing work on this theme, and the other thinks that maybe it should be kept as my residency experience and to move onto something new.

For me the clarity of having a clear subject has meant I have produced more focussed authentic work than I have in a long while.

Ultimately, I would like to keep exploring the theme and motif and the issues the story of St Non brings up for me.

I will see how my studio practise at home continues in my much smaller shed, and also look into other residencies available to artists, as the focus I have rediscovered at Oriel y parc has been invaluable.