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"a man is a success if he gets up in the morning ,goes to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do" Bob Dylan.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

SHIFT.dec 15

The "kurtagonals" album was like an electric shock to my system. As I listened to the tracks all manner of senses were opened.I began to sense something hidden in the deep textures in the mix. Its difficult to describe. Something dark? something mysterious,brooding.Eastern?....On headphones while walking on foggy evenings I seemed to be walking the streets of an unknown Eastern European city. Huge spaces of silence , wedges of deep bass shuddering through my bones, ethereal choirs singing an unholy unknown liturgy.
My imagination was ignited. I could feel something being conceived inside. These sounds had to give birth. This music had to be seen as well as heard. In some strange language the music seemed to be asking me to give it a voice.
My inner self stirred with impatience. The sperm of creation had entered the creative womb as became desperate to grow.
With a strange reverence I made my preparations . Canvas ,pure and white ,ready to give birth. I turned up the volume on the amplifier and listened to the spaces......
and waited....loneliness..isolation...world-weariness.Dark. Deep.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

kurtagonals dec09

it was then I fell upon ECM New Series 'kurtagonals" by Lazlo Hortobagyi, Gyorgy Kurtag jnr, Miklos Lengyelfi.

everything changed.


I have always loved and admired the label E.C.M. and am continually inspired by the music and the art work,There is something about music from the Northern lands that resonates with my spirit. I love Icelandic music. I love E.C.M. Something has shifted inside since Mum passed on. I'm listening to E.C.M. New Series. Arvo Part, Andras Schiff, Bach...and Jarrett, Tomasz Stanko, Enrico Rava.....just listening soaking in the beauty, like a sponge, breathing in the magnificent soul shaking sounds, free jazz, a holy choir, soaring saxaphones, subtle guitar...and the spaces inbetween...tring to live in the silent spaces and look out on the world. what do you see? how can I express my vision?.


Jussi writes, and we are all systems go for April 2010. Wow .
time to evaluate my work and get serious.
I have some definate candidates here , some need some refinement. "Reykavik View" is a certainty.
Working on "silent places" as a tribute to Mum. Charcoal and pastels.
In between times "Desperate Romantics" series about the Pre Raphaelites has inspired me to re-decorate the bedroom Morris style.
I dont like decorating !

louie w how

my mother.Artist and writer. She gave a love of music, books and she taught me to draw.My fondest memory is sitting at the table aged about 8 watching huge snowflakes drift out of a grey sky as we painted birds together. Funniest memory is her face when,in 1967, while they were on holiday, the 17 year old flower child painted a huge psychedelic mural on his bedroom wall!!! no too pleased.
Anyway ,thanks Mum.


ELRIK VISITED. " whats with all these low horizons"
Then my mum had her fall. The next four months we experienced the highs and lows of life before she passed away in September .
No painting were painted.
It was a beautiful summer otherwise.

Roxanne arrives spring/summer 09

One or two musings but nothing serious...no inspirations,
photography ,
Roxanne sits with me in the conservatory "stars of the lid-refinement of their decline" plays in the background ....peace...


Its Easter Sunday morning.I cycle up to the wood near Sheldon for my easter church.Its quiet.Lots of birds,blue tits,finches,robins.I can hear a woodpecker.I muse on the fact that when I was a child I wandered alone in the fields and woods.I always loved nature and still do 50 years later.
"you can always come here " says that still small voice....


Finished "3 windows on eternity" and 2 different "views from Arbor Low".

Watched a documentary on Eric Gill.
Sometimes art is so beautiful I want to weep with my emotions of joy and sadness because a work is so wonderful and beyond my ability .
God let me create.......

snow fell.

arbor low

Feb.09 .Its cold. Windy.I drive to Arbor Low . Take charcoal,pastels. Its exciting.Im into it. The energy coming off the land ,the horizon, in shards of power.I can feel life.
I must capture this feeling. This vision I can see with my interior eye. What is it?Can anyone else see it? The few folks hanging around seem to be just "here" .Dont they realise this is an ancient place? They are standing on a LEY LINE? Well, no, I catch their conversation on the wind. Last nights fun, I want to shake them awake.
The icy blast purges me .I take of my boots and socks and feel the land beneath my feet. I scribble and scratch on my pad.
Later I have fish and chips and a pint of bitter in a pub on the way home.


do all artists hate their work?question their motives?
the last thing I produced was hard work.no flow.
I try too hard.

Decide to paint what I see inside...

inspiration jan09

Watch Simon Sharma's documetary on Turner. Brilliant. I just love those atmospheres. Liz takes me to the Rothko Exhibition at the Tate Modern.
I am blown away by the Great Hall and the TH.2058 installation.( i buy two Arturo Lindsay c/ds straight away).
Sometimes I despair because all the great paintings have been painted.Its much the same with music.We live in the reflected glory of the great masters.
I love Rothko,Pollock,Sutcliffe. When I paint I produce nothing but poor replicas.
what is the point?
How can you break new ground? I dont think it can be done...

Dont stop trying.

end of Jan2009

Listening to loads of Jazz on the E.C.M. label.The music is sublime,the artwork is magnificent.
Cant paint.
I need to define my style.I need to find my voice. At the moment I am wandering and wondering, experimenting, feeling...
I use my camera....


I decide I should begin to prepare for Pori Exhibition even though no date is set and nothing is agreed.
I just put off even mixing paint.My work is useless.
Watch a Wharhol film "Factory People". It is liberating.
Go to studio at 11.30pm witha bottle of whiskey Jono gave me for Christmas. I get drunk, play "Shakti", "Mahavishnu Orchestra" and "Carlos Santana and John McLaughlin" really loud...paint till 2.15 am.

IT WAS SUGGESTED....late 2008/early09

"Why dont we share an exhibition?" was Elrik's question in early 2009. Foolishly I agreed.So it was agreed in principle. Elrik would negotiate with the PORTAIT GALLERIA in Pori and we would proceed. John Rogers (Elrik) pottery and Keith How (Elrond) painting. Hmm already a knot in the stomach and that was last January.
Strangely enough I had productive Autumn in 2008, the weather was wonderful. Sue and I spent hours walking in the woods ,talking to the trees,watching the massive flock of jackdaws fly home to roost. The colours of nature were stunning and inspirational. I consumed by the novels of Charles de Lint and listening to some really strange wierd folk music ."Crow Tongue",Stone Breath, Timothy,Robin Crutchfield, and some strange stuff from the acid folk scene. A magical autumn .I was enchanted away from my usual modus operandi .....