I completed this 80 x 60 cms (31.5 x 23.5 inch) work during a couple of days intensive painting a few of weeks ago just after I’d been shopping for materials; because returning with six canvasses I found them simply too pristine to be left in that state in a corner of my studio!
Unusually for me I was in a black and white mood and so squeezed in turn, over the two days, long, straight lines of Indigo, Mars Black and Titanium White acrylics into large dishes so that I could charge just the tips of a 100 cm (4 inch) wide decorator’s paint brush with the very slightly water-thinned colours. I found that after each short, approximately four to six inch draw or drag of the paintbrush, I needed to wipe any excess paint off the brush with paper towels and basically dry the ends of the bristles before recharging them with fresh paint. This technique was necessary to keep the basic outline produced by the bristles sharp and well-defined across the white canvas.
Paintings which look relatively simple to produce are often, in fact, more complicated than meet the eye because of the necessity to allow - such as with this composition - each coat or layer of paint to dry thoroughly before applying another coat on top… even if it is the same tone or colour, because I did not want them to smudge, mix or merge. Even though there are only three basic colours used in this work, there could be half a dozen layers in places where I have gone over the design in a different direction two or three times with white and again, or alternately, in black.
Although this painting is different to anything I have completed before it follows an “angular” theme I started on a few years ago with my adaptations of the General Vauban fortifications plans… basically lots of angles! It is one I often return to, although the results may look very different in isolation, but I’m sure that if I placed these works together in an exhibition a strong theme would stand out.