Saturday, 22 May 2010

Looking Back

Looking back on some of my work of a decade or so ago, is making me think about where my artwork is going and if I am getting it right. Sometimes I think I am getting better and better, but when I come across paintings like the one of this French café, I begin to wonder. I know I am a lot more careful than I used to be and worry about getting my painting right. But looking at my style in this particular work (and one or two others in similar vein), I think maybe I am getting a little too careful, worrying too much about how my work is going to turn out, and worst of all, tightening up and getting stuck in a rut!
This painting was done at my last sessions at art school back in the late nineties. It’s my interpretation of a photo from a glossy French magazine. Here I’ve used cartridge paper, 135gsm and A3 in size (had to scan two halves). I started with a light pencil sketch, followed by watercolour, then picked out some of the detail with pen.  Looking at the minimal layering of the watercolour and the loose and casual way I’ve done the pen work, makes me think that maybe I’m trying too hard these days, and should just let myself go a little at times.
Yes, I’m going to have another go at something in this style, just to see if the old magic is still there!


  1. It really is a fun painting Frank. I know the feeling you have - of looking back at earlier paintings, and think it's a way of judging who we are now compared to us, back then. From my own view, I've had to come to accept that I no longer desire to be that old me anymore because I've grown within and moved on. The desires are different and the present understanding is what's reflected in the art.

  2. Fabulous Frank. This post really touches the spot for me because, as you know, I am also concerned that I've become too tight with my work.I wish I could produce something half as good as this. Great job.

  3. Thanks Alice, I wish I could analyse myself as well as you.

    John - thanks for the compliments. Let's all have a stab at loosening up a bit then.

  4. Frank I absolutely LOVE this sketch! I can totally relate to how you feel about getting in to a rut and worrying too much - I am exactly the same!

  5. Sandra - if I'm going to get out of a rut, then you're coming with me LOL! Let's keep an open mind and dare to experiment a bit with our art.