Large oil on canvas…6′ x 4′ – InterconnectionsEvery now and then people send me images of paintings or sketches which I have long forgotten. This week a friend posted a sketch (apparently she found it on the back of another painting) which immediately took me to a point in time that has continued to have a huge influence on my work.
This was the sketch……..One of many initial ‘rock and nude’ sketches from the early eighties.
For those who have followed my blog for a while, they might remember other posts about this period, however the unearthing of this sketch has prompted me to tell the story of how the series came about and more importantly why it continues to influence my work and thinking today.
In 1981/82 – I was invited to paint on Isle au Haut, a rugged island (about the size of Manhattan Island, New York) part of Acadia National Park, Maine. At that time other than a few lobster fishermen, for the most part the Island was uninhabited. There was a depot where basic provisions could be bought. Blueberries, clams and other natural delights could be foraged and the fisherman were always happy to sell some of their catch.
I took this photograph from the Internet as in 1981 we didn’t take a camera…everything was recorded with brush and paints.
Boom Beach. Ecologically speaking this is a very young Island….there is a sense of rawness….which I loved.
Initially, I was interested in painting the rocks….and indeed made countless watercolour sketches. After returning to the mainland, It was from these sketches that I painted large canvases.
One of the first Rock paintings – large oil on canvas. I believe this painting is in Colorado. Note that it was signed before I began to use my maiden name as part of my signature (Weight Reed)
As I observed and explored the Island, the deep understanding came to me that ‘there are no lines around Mother Nature – Everything is fluid’ All of life is interconnected.
I believe it is because we have ignored this basic principle that our world is in such a mess today…..!
The more I observed, I saw human form within the rock formations, which lead me to begin a large series of work where I consciously integrated the two elements. (My header painting was the first in that series, and I am glad to say it is now with me in London)
Another in the series….large canvas.
Over the years, I have travelled a great deal and lived in different places. I have had big studios, and small studios….which often account for my working in one medium or another. In other words a big studio usually equals large canvases….smaller studios mean paper pieces….and when I am travelling and painting…watercolour is a much easier medium to manage.
Currently I am living and working in a relatively small space in London which is a good base to travel from and at the same time oversee the care of my 95 year old Mother who is in a nursing home close by. However, should that change I plan to spend much more time in France, and other parts of Europe, and ultimately develop a studio in Marmite Heaven.…(more about that in another blog)
One might ask – how the magical hummingbirds are influenced by this period?
Hummingbirds are a constant reminder of the wonders and fluid nature of all life. watercolour/gouache