The landscape of Scotland is important to me, but it is a long time since I have been right to the top - the less romantic stretches which excited me so when I was last there. The artist whose paintings come closest to those hair-raising memories is Wendy Sutherland.
Rolling hills (from the Frances Kyle Gallery where there are more images)
Water under and over (from Browns Gallery where there are more images)
Here there are interesting videos about how she works.
These paintings have got my juices flowing because they so strongly animate my remembered experiences. I am trying to explore what North means to me, and these powerful images (just think how fantastic the actual paintings must be) have helped push me in a direction I think is right - so far.
As happens so often with my work, I move forward by looking back. I re-use previous figures, backgrounds, even work-in-sketch which has not felt complete when made. This is like using a personal vocabulary when sometimes the words were not yet fully understood, but now there is an appropriate context for them.
Waving paper, heat transferred cotton scrap, painted silk offcuts, hand stitchedI made Waving some seven years ago when I was exploring collage. I was thinking about alone-ness and vulnerability, and somehow that is partly how I feel about North: that sense of being naked, needing protection from the beautiful but unforgiving elements.
Some years ago, when I was learning to draw on the computer, and inspired by a Richard Diebenkorn nude I achieved a figure which pleased me, but for which I had no specific use. I re-drew the figure as a drypoint which I then printed, this being that manifestation. As background I have used a pastel drawing I have used before (most recognisably in Snagged, below), but this time turned it round. It is still a sketch-in-progress - but again, I like that feeling of vulnerability.
The other sketch-in-progress which dates to just before I started my northern readings, but seems to fit in with my current thinking is The elusive idea - but that is more to do with the Far North, and concern about global warming rather than a personal intimacy of North.