I have always enjoyed working with charcoal on a large scale. I like its expressive range and simplicity of means. I usually use willow charcoal – in effect a handful of burnt twigs – sometimes adding pastel and/or graphite. The charcoal drawings are often compiled from several different sources rather than a single ‘view’.
I work with oil paints on acrylic primed linen, using soft brushes rather than the hog brushes more usually associated with oil painting.
The landscape paintings are made in the studio from a range of sources, including sketchbooks, photographs and memory. They are often prompted by a particular moment or experience which is then recreated in the course of developing the painting.
The small still life oil paintings are an ongoing series which I turn to as a relief from the more complex larger paintings. I work directly from observation, often from an apple or other natural forms, placed on a dark background.
I discovered the ancient medium of sepia ink made from cuttlefish in a specialist art materials shop in London. It has a viscous quality and gradually turns brown with time. I use it in conjunction with Indian ink to give more depth of tone, and touches of Chinese white watercolour. I work on a very small scale and there are elements of mono printing in the technique I am developing.