The Paintings

The most basic pleasure is to draw and all that you see on this site has begun as a drawing on paper. Sometimes as a very closely observed study of a nude, sometimes not much more than a few scrappy lines to give me the sweep of a beach.

I’ll redraw or trace this drawing onto a slab of clay, rolled out with a rolling pin like a piece of pastry and begin building up the image in low relief, sometimes cutting away but mostly adding clay until I have a finished sculpture in wet clay.

I make a plaster of paris mould which destroys the sculpture but leaves me with a mould I can re-work. By pressing the clay back into it by hand I get slightly imperfect impressions. The clay can distort and have slight patterns from the pressure, almost a grain which I like as a counterpoint to the detail. It also makes each one of the fifteen in the edition subtlety different.

Once fired, the ceramics become my canvas - pure white.

I paint with watercolour washes, sometimes more water than paint as the clay is incredibly porous, also acrylic and gouache over the watercolour, pencil, coloured pencil over that and occasionally some gold leaf highlights.

Sealed with shellac and a couple of coats of UV varnish so they can be touched, dusted, gently cleaned.

Each is mounted on a painted board. I attach patinated copper cleats at the corners, more decoration than necessity, echoing those ancient shards of sculpture you see in museums.

Simply framed they are a painted sculpture, a sculptured painting.