First Colony (Civilisation Spell)

First Colony (Civilisation Spell)

2008, 76x101cm, Acrylic on canvas, 450

I have always found that my paintings are a product of both the initial idea and the painting process itself; it is not simply a matter of transferring the completed idea onto the canvas. In the past, I have used this to take me in new directions. Although I may think I know how the painting will turn out, as I start to paint, what I see changes how I proceed. I make decisions based on the partially complete picture. Often, the paint doesn't want to do what you want it to do, and the painting changes from the initial idea.

I thought it would be interesting to detach myself from this 'interference' from external factors for a change. As I saw it, the only way I could ignore how the painting was progressing in order to use only the initial idea, was not to see the painting as it progressed. I would have to blindfold myself during the painting process.

I have used several techniques of painting blindfolded. In the purest form, I am blindfolded from white canvas to finished painting, using notches in a cardboard palette to locate a particular colour ('Dimension Spell', 'Horizon Spell'). In a variation of this technique, I allow myself to see the palette, but not the canvas ('Vision Spell', 'Resurrection Spell', 'Peducian Napsis'), as I found that the mechanics of locating paint on the palette detracted from the fluidity of painting.

In a further effort to preserve fluidity, I tried another method; drawing the initial design on the canvas using marker pens whilst blindfolded, then finishing using paint with the blindfold removed ('First Colony', 'Scaffold', 'Offering Spell', 'Peducian Man', 'Peducian Sunset', 'Nightmare Spell', 'Escape from the idolatry of the superfluous').