In 2017, I created over 40 paintings. It was interesting, like last year, to look back and see how the work has changed throughout the year. The colours are more understated. Lead, copper, bronze and gold have arrived on my palette as you’ll see in the seven paintings I chose for us to look at again.
Do you have a favourite one? Do let me know.
Thank you for your continued support over the last year.
‘The Awakening’. This recent large piece was finished just before the new year. Built up in glazes of gold and sepia tones, it heralds the light of the New Year.
‘Take me to the Island XI’. During January 2017, I explored monochromatic seascapes. This one is a striking and dramatic mixed media piece that now lives in California.
‘From Dark into Light VII’ is very much a continuation of the piece above but with more of a silver hue. This exploration of the sea and sky is quieter in atmosphere.
‘You Are Everything VIII’ continues the metallic theme with copper and bronze emerging.
‘Clearing in the Wood IV’. In July, when the heat of Provence was at its height, I painted a magical piece rich in deep gold and orange set against the silhouetted trees of a balmy summer evening and now resides in the United States.
‘Where the Veil is Thin II’. In the autumn, the greenish-copper undertones of this landscape painting evokes the light of the west of Ireland on a very wet day.
‘Soleil Levant’. To come full circle, I will end with this piece finished at the turning of the year. It’s a large painting that echoes, with a muted sepia and gold palette, ‘The Awakening’ piece at the top of the post.
These are my picks for 2017.
Now over to you, which painting marked your year?
My first choice out a a year’s output which has been varied and interesting in terms of colour, style and technique is the lovely ‘Au Clair de Lune’. I am unable to share an image but it present is on your website.
My husband and I liked this trio of paintings so much that we acquired them as a gift for each other and they now grace our bedroom and we delight in them every day. When i looked back on the comments I made on your blog, I wasn’t surprised to find that I still feel the same about them but more so for they have become an important part of our life and home.
“I think these are very romantic John – beautiful and mysterious. They each have an atmosphere of their own yet work so well as a group. The light in Number 1 is particularly interesting as it highlight the grasses to reveal what seems to me to be a path leading to the copse and I also like the way you have created the clouds with colour. It is such a limited palette and yet very effective in all it conveys. I was intrigued by the title and had heard of it and found that it is a poem by Verlaine which contains the line:
‘The melancholy moonlight, sweet and lone’ which seems very apt when enjoying these lovely paintings”.
My second choice is ‘The Emotion of Colour’ which again is a lovely trio of paintings. As you explained at the time John, they were inspired by and were a moving tribute to the work of Howard Hodgkin. It is apt that this was made through painting and the aptly expressed title – the emotion of colour. Once again, we fell in love these and their power and vibrancy enhance our lives every day – this time when we are in our kitchen!
Thank you John for the enduring pleasure these two works give us and many congratulation s on the work you have produced this year; I wish you the continued gift of creativity and every success in 2018.
I was tinking about including a triptych particularly the ‘Au Clair de Lune’ set simply for the reasons that you so eloquently mentioned. The limited palette of purples and pinks is I feel quite unusual and adds an air of mystery to the copse of trees in the moonlight, perhaps I should have chosen eight. Your thoughts on the painting made me revisit them as well as the Hodgkin pieces. Thank you very much and best wishes to you both for 2018.
All gorgeous, John. My favourite is Soleil Levant. All the best for 2018.
Thank you Janine,
I particularly like this painting and mood as it was the last one I made. Best wishes for your own painting in 2018 Janine.
“At the end of the day” was my favourite, John – I loved the combination of purple and beige clouds. Another close second was “you are everything” a mauve night with bright full moon. Congratulations on your continuing success, the website looks really well. Best wishes for 2018, eoin
Thanks very much Eoin for picking out your faves, I was going to pick the ‘you are everything’ piece myself. I hope 2018 will be a good one for you and your painting