For my first series of paintings this year I wanted a challenge. I wanted to document and translate scenes that contain all the forms, shapes and weather conditions of our landscape. I chose Wales as my muse. From vivid green hills; to dark demanding mountains, to jagged slate cliffs, the perfect setting for ‘A Journey in Textures’.
I embarked on a ten-hour round trip from Birmingham to St Davids experiencing all manner of weather from drizzle, sun, and then dense fog. No matter, the rain, the rolling fields and hills, had a glow, that was enhanced in moments of sunlight that crept through, so desperate to reveals themselves through the thick cloud coverage. Valleys and mountains were engulfed by cloud giving an unnerving feel, especially as the light began to fade and I was left in the pitch black of night.
I photographed every change of the terrain to give a sense of the movement from inland to the coast. It was glorious to leave behind the industrial grey city of Birmingham and travel to the coast, inhaling the crisp clean air. It’s always exciting when you have been traveling for a good few hours and then you turn a corner and suddenly, the land drops and you see the first glimpse of where the sea meets the horizon line. There was an intense glow that is so distinctive; the daylight reflecting off the water, it can only be one thing.
On foot I walked along the sandy beach of Newgate and captured the breeze, the light and the vast open space that lay before me. Listening to the waves breaking in the distance I explored the large land mass that looked as though it had been carved away rather than weathered. Within this there were dark recesses that had been cut off by the incoming tide – maybe in summer I will have the chance to return and explore these caves in more detail.
I drove on to Whitesands at St David’s Head where the slate black emerged from beneath the grass edge. How excited I am by the prospect of reproducing the intense shade and jagged formations. The journey started with man-made lines; smooth and grey, and ended with untamed shapes; rugged and rough. I cannot wait to put paintbrush to canvas…