Saturday, 12 November 2016

Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.

Working Outdoors

Winter has suddenly arrived.  Temperatures have plummeted and there have been winds from the north.  The current rain storms are stripping the leaves from the trees - leaves that had hung an unusually long time and had turned into a magnificent display of colour during the past three weeks, due to the recent mild Autumn.

The change in the weather prevents me from working outdoors, which I have been doing more often since I took up a residency at The Gallery In The Garden at Great Saling in Essex.  This year-long project gives me the opportunity to paint, draw and walk in the grounds each week.  The grounds of the gallery and the adjoining private garden were designed by Sir Humphrey Repton.  The aim of a residency is to prepare a body of work based on a particular location which culminates in an exhibition.  The plan for mine it that it will be shown at the gallery sometime during August and September next year.  It is a real privilege to be permitted to spend time working in isolation in such a beautiful place.

Painting outdoors on these warm Autumn days has been a delight.  I have found it energising to work in a setting which I find so magical.  Although outdoor art necessitates a bit of planning and can present some practical difficulties, it can often create lively and less self-conscious work.  A small window of opportunity to capture a view means that the work must be done quickly and without fuss. Technical challenges also present opportunities to develop new techniques or ways of working as problems are solved.  I’m determined to keep working outdoors as much as possible throughout the Winter, even if it means creating the briefest of sketches whilst wearing fingerless gloves!

Meanwhile, I have just delivered a new set of paintings to an exhibition at The Leaping Hare, at Wyken in Suffolk, and am working on a commission before beginning next year’s programme.  I’m very lucky to have these differing opportunities and through them I feel that I am always learning.  There is always so much to learn and so much work to make.  There is so much development to be achieved and so much further that I want to go.

All text & images ©2016 Carol Saunderson