Friday, November 08, 2013


Year’s ago I read a book called ‘On Not Being Able to Paint’. The author was Marion Milner, a clinical psychologist who was also a keen painter. All I can remember was her advocating an exercise aimed at suppressing logical ways of observing and allowing emotional responses to take control. To do this she advocated relaxing into a state of reverie and allowing the hand to make marks.  She claimed that the results could be quite surprising. Sitting comfortably on a warm summer day in front of fine view could sometimes result in vigorous mark making that suggested a violent storm.
From time to time I try this method and adapt it to making marks which don’t represent anything other than being what the eye likes. I like to use a medium like soft pencil or Charcoal which can be used to exploit a range of design elements notably Line, Tone, and Texture. One of Picasso’s artistic objectives was to ‘realise forms’ and once a form is realised it is there to lead a life of its own.

Here are two examples which don’t represent anything other than forms. They’re what my eye likes but they may not appeal to anybody else.

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