At the top of the road where I grew up, the landscape opened up. It provided a portal to a place where I felt at peace. The brooding of a 14 year old on the top of a hill, in the middle of a field looking out over the land in front of me, stretching to the horizon, watching the clouds rolling past, the feeling of the sun on my back, seeing the colour changing, the sun disappearing behind the clouds … has always stayed with me. The feeling of ataraxia came to me and stayed. Anytime I felt the pressures of the now I would take myself to that place and allow them to float away and just absorb that moment, I spent many days there, hours, sometimes crying into the wind as only a teenager can, sometimes talking to it, mostly just happy being.
Years later, I can recall with absolute clarity the feeling that I had being on that field. Occasionally I am lucky enough to feel that again. Whenever this happens the places stay with me, they resonate. The visceral experience I have always struggled to find the words to express, I bring into the studio and onto the canvas.
Whenever I’m looking for inspiration, all I have to do is go out and look for a place that makes me feel that same level of refuge I did as a child. I cannot conjure it up, it does not always happen, but I am always searching. I wander, I explore, The feel of the sun on my face, the rain on my back, the wind through my hair, the rough and smooth textures of the land, the colour of the sky from morning to sunset, the fragrance of the plants and flowers coming into season, the songs of the birds, the explorations of animals help to define a place.
All the paintings that I create have a sense of place. It is a way to honour other artists who have expanded my horizons, stoked my hunger for exploration, and enhanced my appreciation of this wonderfully diverse world and be open to receive whatever I may find or stumble across.
Meandering streams, rambling forest paths, billowing fields. They are journeys where I collect not just a visual snapshot of a place in a certain time, but the feeling that place had on me whilst I was there.