I like people. Interacting with them if possible or drawing them if I'm on public transport or in a cafe, as I often carry a very small sketchbook around with me. Locally employed models have been the mainstay of my drawings, usually with dramatically themed clothing, props and postures.
Moving figures are notoriously difficult to capture, so my drawings become abstractions, sometimes one figure floating next to another, which I leave entangled. Especially my large stitched works on canvas using an electric sewing machine, with the model in front of me. The figures take on the aspect of being in "Free-Fall".
My favourite projects involve several people being filmed or photographed while enacting a script, (or silent), that I have devised, such as "Tell Me A Lie", "The Stress of Exclusion" and "The Tartan Fleck". The latter two are short films that will be shown at Open Studios 2020.
Several films produced have formed the focus of my installations set in ancient buildings, such as the old prison in Aberdeen, Scotland. I regularly attend the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, from which I gather an abundance of creative ideas.
It was in Scotland that I began using infrared film and my darkroom to capture pixelated light on eerie settings. Three of these photographs were greatly enlarged and exhibited in the Scottish National Gallery. In an exhibition at Aberdeen Art Gallery, they received a Commendation. On display in Open Studios 2020 will be a large (75 cms x 75 cms) photograph last shown in the Perth Mandorla Art Award 2012 theme "Born Of A Woman", with my title of "Seven Billion People Born of Women" This very large photograph was developed and printed in my darkroom in an entirely experimental process.
At a visit to the Royal Academy in London on 23rd September 2019, to see Sir Antony Gormley's retrospective, I also saw Helene Schjerfbeck's exhibition. Her portraits inspired me to produce several small, intimate works, with the background strongly balancing highly abstracted faces.
There are a variety of figurative works in my studio, from oil paintings to sewn portraits on canvas, depicting vulnerability or domestic scenarios.
Strong colour is not something that I shy away from. It could start the portrait/figure study, or be used for its emotional intent.