A key piece of advice, and one that has just been reiterated by my Painting tutor, is to slow down and take more time to explore. I’ve commented there and it’s relevant here that I think this is due to my still being in shallow waters and that I am expecting this to change in due course. When I have more depth of relationship with the material, depth of perception and focus will follow. I have been an expert in my field for many years and so this feels like floundering. It’s uncomfortable but that bodes well for action.
You have pointed me towards artists – Sutherland, Nash, Clough, and Caulfield – whose work I might find resonates with some of the techniques I was trying to use for this assignment and, as usual you have hit on work I find engaging.
I know I need to focus more on research, this too has been reiterated, and to find ways of examining the work of others for thoughts and ideas to influence my own. Following your earlier advice, I have Sister Wendy Beckett’s book – a massive tome full of colour photos – and this reminded me of her TV series which I saw years ago and just now found again on YouTube. Mary Acton’s Learning to Look at Paintings is another; both of them handy and easy to absorb. I bought some others too, which gives me a range of reference texts that should help me plug the gaps and provide a solid base for reflection. Thank you for your insights and supportive comments.