When I paint, I’m not striving to present something that I have seen, rather, what I have thought. My paintings are not an open window for the viewer’s eye, but the viewer’s mind, by allowing them to travel in their imagination.
I’m inspired by the Chinese Landscape style, Shang Shui (literal translation; mountain, water landscape). The blue, green landscapes, a concept developed in Chinese painting from the Tang Dynasty, and used in Tibetan thangka painting, I find this gives the paintings a jewel like quality, suggesting a fairytale atmosphere.
Pure water is said to possess eight qualities: clear, cool, healing, soothing, odourless, delicious, light and soft. Water forms a central them in my work, meandering streams, whirlpools, rock pools and waterfalls. I find it interesting how this highly stylised form of painting water, developed centuries ago still looks fresh and contemporary.
I paint on card and cotton sized with gesso. I paint using gouache and egg tempera. The opaqueness of this medium lends itself well to meticulous detail and fine contours. I use a magnifying lamp to check all of my shading and lines. The technique I use is derived from my years training as a thangka painter, where a very small fine brush is used to mix the paints on the canvas, rather than in a mixing palette.
Paintings in progress include mystical landscapes in monochrome colours. I have also taken a new direction, still using the same techniques but painting flowers and vegetables.