<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
As intimated in my last paragraph I was determined, in year one of HND, to be a painter. I would walk into the woods, sketchbook in hand, sketch away and hopefully transfer these thoughts, feelings, marks I was making onto canvas. I was at the time reading a lot about Constable and his love of trees. His sketchbooks I scanned at the V&A museum and they excited me immensely, I felt honoured to be looking at such beautiful work. (See fig. 3). Constable’s sketchbooks capture the pure essence of the beauty that Constable saw before him. This work encouraged me to spend more time out on location and soak up what was around me just like Constable had done.
Fig. 3. View on the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Stour, Museum no. Sketchbook 1259-1888
John Constable used this sketchbook during 1814.
Actual size 11.3cm x 8.6cm, Victoria and Albert Museum.
When I started year 2of HND I had a mental block with my art creativity, I did not know which way to turn. I spoke to Rod Harman, he inspired me to carry on by speaking of Constable saying that the wind in the trees reminded him of his wife’s last breath when she was dying of cancer. This stirred up a great emotion rush in me, how wonderful and beautiful that Constable could hear or see such things in nature. This gave me the strength to carry on with what I believed in.
It wasn’t enough for me that I was just sketching and painting. The paintings I produced at the end of my first year were good but they lacked something. Something that I was trying to pull out of the woods wasn’t quite happening in my paintings. The first few paintings I created at the beginning of year 2 were good and seemed successful in what I was trying to achieve but they still lacked something. See fig 4.
Fig 4. Painting No.2, 2005, Elaine Sayers
I did not know what this was. I felt very down about my work and was not able to paint anymore. I had lost the enthusiasm and enjoyment of painting. It was not working. I had to change.