Sunday, 7 June 2015



'frock' (mixed media on linen) - and antique photograph of unknown woman

Like many people interested in art and crafts I have eclectic taste. I am particularly interested in certain things to do with the past: objects found in homes, textiles, fashion. I like styles and ideas from different periods, and in my little rented home we have furniture from various eras, pottery that is centuries old next to very recent pots, my new and not so new artwork mixed with small vintage finds such as prints and photographs.

As a collector of antique and vintage photographs, I am constantly looking into past lives. I am not so interested in making up a story for this unknown woman (above), her secrets are safely her own. But I do find inspiration in considering the every day textures and colours she may have experienced. The shape and feel of things she might have known by heart.

I've been taking a break from working directly in my sketchbooks and have been instead spending time making small abstract studies and putting them up temporarily on a wall alongside photographs, postcards etc... Just to see how I can pair things. How can seeing the past and the present help me make small details of the future?


antique photograph of unknown girl and tiny untitled abstract

tiny + small

tiny + small abstracts

Though the shapes here may be simple, there are several layers to each painting and I spend a lot of time just looking - or walking from one end of the room where the light is better to into the dark to see how the paint looks. I put things temporarily on the wall (with simple masking tape loops) - and take photographs because this helps me to see if a painting is 'done'.

I like to think that these quite small studies could live amongst old photographs or more modern art.

1 comment:

Jacqui Dodds said...

Cathy, this way of working is really interesting and I like the pairings you are making. I seem to spend more time thinking about and looking at a piece of my own work than making, however, this seems to work as like you it helps to work out when something is finished.