To the studio (via Bath!)

Finally I got back in the studio today after working my socks off in the gallery in the run-up to Xmas and over New Year. There is always so much admin to do, it keeps me from my proper work – painting. So I have decided to go straight to the studio in the mornings from now on, and not to turn the computer on or answer the phone before 4pm!

This is a new resolve, having had a weekend away in Bath to recover I was able to get stuck in to some new work today. I started by breathing in the fantastic colours of the sodden fields of Pembrokeshire while I was walking Alfie around Rosebush, feeling my way back into the landscape after the shopping malls and yellow stone walls of Bath. The contrast really helped!

I have been thinking about glass a lot, and after a few hours of painting I turned my attention to enamelling some glass pieces to layer together in a painterly way. I always feel my work is held back by the technical aspects of working with this transformative medium, in some ways the technical side fascinates me and satisfies my nerdy side, but in others it is like trying to communicate in a foreign language…today I tried not to let that hold me back, I tried to work with the enamel powders the same way I work with paint. How well that will work I will find out when I open the kiln tomorrow!

This is what it looked like before firing.

My favourite painting from Bath was this one by Fred Cuming at the Adam Gallery.

The other painting I liked there was by Barbara Rae, called Valentia Pass.

It was also a lovely surprise to see David Tress`s exhibition at the Victoria Art Gallery. David is a Pembrokeshire-based artist and I am constantly amazed by his incredibly energetic work and the subtle truth of his colour. I liked his somewhat humorous take on Bath, while Den loved the churches, which reminded him of the many happy hours he spends looking at churches in the summer while he is doing bat surveys!

But Bath was not all about art. We also had some delicious meals, most memorably at Demuth`s (which has to be my favourite British restaurant). The ‘Port poached williams pear with celeriac and hazelnut stack and port and jasmine jus’ was just about the most perfect dish I have ever eaten – it looked pretty good too!

We also enjoyed a comedy gig at Komedia, Michael Fabbri was our favourite – I hope we can get him to Narberth Comedy Club sometime.

So, all-in-all, the weekend away was a success and, like all good holidays, it has made being at home much nicer!

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