Letting paint be paint


Work in progress
acrylic on canvas
355 × 455mm

The idea of “letting paint be paint” struck me while developing my recent sketchbook drawings. In some ways it’s a bit of a nonsense statement as what else can paint be? And paint can be many things – smooth, dry, flat, sticky, fast, slow, thick, thin – the list goes on, but the point is paint is not biro ink, or pencil, or any other medium. Paint has its own inherent qualities and to expect or want it to behave otherwise is going to result in a fruitless struggle. Better to work with these qualities than against them.

The itch


Sketchbook scan / When to stop?
biro ink on recycled paper
approx 98 × 116mm

“I have no story, which is why I am a painter. Beckett has a line about itching to make something with nothing to say. You know if you have got the itch.”

From an interview in The Guardian with the English painter George Shaw.

TV drawing


Sketchbook scan
ink on recycled paper
98 × 116mm

Made while half watching TV. Not that the TV was bad, more that sometimes I find it useful to be partially distracted when making this kind of drawing.