Looking out from Crone woods over Powerscourt and Djouce woods.
This came about on the top of Scarr mountain a few days ago. Looking out over the valley and onto the distant hills and forests. I followed the line of trails with my eye like a virtual map in front of me. Trying to work out my surroundings and where I was in relation to what I saw.
Plein air drawing in charcoal on cotton rag paper.
My trails, my ventures, my paths, my presence. It calls to mind a sense of living and where I’ve been in life up until now. Time has no presence, its hard to comprehend sometimes.
Plein air drawing is something I am doing a lot more of lately. It has no comparison to drawing in the studio. I get a sense of place in the studio and I work from memory. The studio forces me in to draw without a subject in the room and work from memory. When I draw out in the open, something else happens. It allows me to connect in the moment and respond there and then when something that catches my eye. In the studio I recall those moments but to bring back an image of my interpretation unlike a captured photographic image, reinforces a strong connection to the landscape and how I see it.
I am working on this new painting at the moment and here is a small part of the detail in close up. In its early stages it had been leaning toward a title that came to mind – The Rings Of Saturn.. and more from a sound and movement perspective. For a part of the process I listened to sounds recorded of the planet posted on YouTube..it seemed to intensify the experience and I’m hoping some of that comes through in this painting on completion.
I have been doing a lot of plein air drawings lately out in the open landscape. I want express through these drawings a sense of atmosphere in the landscape I have been surrounded by. I am abstracting what I see and also what I don’t see. I am really enjoying expression in an abstract way through these drawings.
Transferring this onto canvas is a very different experience and I see the drawings more of a study or observation for painting but in a non analytical way, similar to visual note taking of what I want to express on canvas. These drawings and sketches have surprisingly helped me push abstraction in a more free and loose way. Like gestures of the memory of a place or thing or sometimes neither a place or thing.. It just feels right and I am more excited than ever to be in my studio painting and painting, probably for the first time ever..
I am painting a lot of new work and I will share these here on my website in the near future. Come back again soon if you’d like to have a look.