The creation of a painting involves a lot of chaos, random searching, worrying moments, general fear and lostness. It is always an uncertain and terrifying process. A book that had a great influence on me and which has helped me throughout my life was 'Feel the fear and do it anyway’ by Susan Jeffers. It has become one of my mantras. This fear is always there before every new creation.
At several points in the making of a painting there is a necessity to get oneself out the way. There has to be a ' letting go' of old ideas and confinements; the ability to take risks, make a mess, and destroy what is tidy, familiar and predictable'
When a painting is finished I am usually astonished at the wreckage of the studio. When working on a new painting chaos seems to be a by product of order and beauty. I tidy nothing as I go along. The mounds of paper, brushes, paint pots and rags get ever bigger. Even the water turns to mud. Out of this chaos this fine gentle ordered beautiful thing emerges.
It is a surreal moment when I pick up a painting from the framers and there it is, contained and ordered in its beautiful frame. Calm, pristine and professional. Blood, sweat ,tears, anguish and general chaos quite gone.