I became stuck as to how to proceed and had a break from the project -I wasn’t satisfied with the preliminary work and was worried it was uninteresting. I wondered if I had picked the right subject. I was behind with my log and had computer problems so decided to write notes by hand and write up later- as I am doing now.
After a few days I tried a charcoal and pen and ink drawing of Rosa moving – had to be quick and also took a photo for quick reference. Her concentration as she carried an apple in one hand and a biscuit in the other was something worth working on.
The charcoal drawing worked better than the pen and ink one. From this I tried a monoprint and I began to feel I had something. I tried more monoprints of the garden using a pencil but these were a bit messy – however I could now see that my subject had expressive potential.
White tissue was glued to a heavyweight paper and left to dry overnight. Then a blue and ochre ink wash was brushed on and left to dry. This created a textured background with folds, dips and lines. By this time I knew the drawing quite well from memory -and I also I had the drypoint print by me for reference plus the 3 paintings , referred to in my artist’s statement, by Palmer, Colquhoun and Eardley.
I painted various greens in acrylic on newspaper as this surface tears well ,is thin and easy to stick. I also collected a few ‘found’ patterns from magazines. A few bits of this paper I stuck onto the ground at random and was ready to go. I worked between media as much as possible, so a line of ink there, a charcoal smudge here, paint, oil pastel and so on. I think this is important because if one works over the whole of the picture say in pen first, then moves to charcoal, then pastel and so on, there is a danger of producing a monotonous effect. I had discovered that working with a lot of media means working thoughtfully and slowly.
I became involved with this work as things were happening that I had not anticipated. Although not a transcription Ithe piece seemed to me to have similarities to Church Lench.
I had not planned it but I tried gluing the figure onto the picture and , to my surprise, it looked right . However in my final piece I thought the child would be more integrated if drawn in the garden.
I was worried there was not enough tonal contrast and the piece was too sombre, but I wasn’t sure about this so decided I would leave it for a day or two and then criticise it again. This I did and felt as the lead up to my final piece it worked ok and had given me ideas as to what not to do- the main one being not to use gouache as it had the danger of being too dominant a media.