My on-line diary began in the 1990's from my studio in the North of England. After a lapse of ten years, I resumed posting from my present studio on the Caribbean island of Dominica.

From the far beginning, the intention has been to give an insight into my working methods, and to share the triumphs, trials and tribulations of work-in-progress.

My diary pages are followed by thousands of artists, art students and art lovers in over 50 countries.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Working at the speed of light

While searching through old press cuttings I came across an article by the Sunday Times art critic, Waldemar Januszczak titled, “Working at the Speed of Light”. In the article he gives credit to the artists who paint fast; among them, Michelangelo.

I first realized a speedy brush stroke…to be a true guide to an artist’s talent…when I had a chance to examine Michelangelo’s handiwork on the Sistine ceiling from close up during the chapel’s restoration…It was the speed of his brush strokes that amazed me…In the scene of God creating the earth, the world and its vegetation was the work of seconds. Adam’s famous penis was traced with a single cocky outline. All over the ceiling there were astonishing displays of painting at breakneck speed. Never have I seen clearer evidence of artistic genius.

The entanglement of lips, arms, breasts and hands in today’s painting was thrown down just before Annabelle had to rush to catch a bus home. After an hour of holding the reclining pose for her sculpture, the sweet release of rolling over signaled the end of the session. But, as often happens, it’s the rolling over that reveals a transitionary position that cannot be contrived. When I catch that illusive moment out of the corner of my eye, I beg my model to hold it right there and give me time to work at the speed of light.

Now you can run for your bus!

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