DSC 00291lighter900 Copy


6 MARCH 2021

 The curves of 'the beast' are now more prominent and flowing better across the canvas...Orange to red and a swell on the top-right horizon. 


BOOK 7 The Beast from the Sea 45x70cms Copy


BOOK 7: Re-visited, December 2020

Possibly the painting that has changed the most during the recent reflections. I thought the version below was confusing and the language too close to the work of Howard Hodgkin. The painting now better reflects the apocalyptic darkness that permeates the novel.

After toying with 'Retribution', 'Retribution Blues', 'Mood Indigo', we have a new title 'The Beast from the Sea', which works on several levels in the context of the novel.


DSC 00621900WEB Copy



Looking, brooding over the weekend...brought in some different blues today, cobalt and cerulean, working mainly around the perimeter with cascading shapes and fast marks creating more movement. There is also a new, subtle but critical reference from the novel which of course I can't talk about until the series is complete! I think we are there...


detail 1 700 Copydetail



Is it what you see or what you want to see? 


Blue 900 web Copy


Today I brought in light and specifics from the novel. The blues were intensified with ultramarine glazes. I'm enjoying the relationship between the snaking Prussian Blue line and the delicacy of the geometric red-lines, which in turn reinforce the larger triangular motif off-centre. Now there are questions, ambiguities, complexities: is the blue-line free, gestural or controlled, an 'illusion' of freedom? Are the red-lines behind the blue-line or simply smaller? What am I looking at?

This painting is now on a knife-edge. At the moment, the idea of introducing a submarine to bring it closer to the novel seems ludicrous but not impossible - a question of finding the right language,scale and presence. A few different marks or turning the canvas and it becomes Porthleven - now the boards are up in the harbour (below)

 Or perhaps the painting just 'is' - blue can be water or just 'blue'.  


DSC 00501700 Copy


 SAT 13 NOV 2020

Two books are favourites to be the next painting on the '20 Books=20 Paintings' series...the series needs a rich-blue painting. Starting with paint, marks, colour; then looking for visual connections in the paint to ideas sourced in the novel, before imposing those ideas and looking again...

It's a process that allows for the unexpected and the joy of painting and the flexibility to ride the paintings and change the ideas...


DSC 00342900SHARP1 Copy


How to use the beautiful blue? 

A book springs to mind, different from the one's I started with. It struck me that the letters that spell 'BLUE' appear in the name of one of the main characters. Back to the letters again! - It's meant to be. Where to place that submarine?