CATH O’LEARY – SEPTEMBER RESIDENCY

I’d originally expected to make landscape inspired abstracts in blues and greens and took various extremes of rectangular boards and canvasses.  On arrival, I was almost overwhelmed by the colours and close sound of the sea and spent my first full day walking around, photographing and writing.  I didn’t get my paint out until Monday.

Blue square

Blue square

Never underestimate the power of rockpools!  The richness of the colours surprised and fascinated me.  Climbing around Priests Cove with a notebook and camera I felt like a scientist and soon started to work, mostly on squares of card using the colours and textures that stuck in my mind or that I felt compelled to use.  I began to use colours that I have never used before – ochres, deep greens, violets, red…  the big canvasses remained unused.

Never underestimate the power of rockpools

Never underestimate the power of rockpools

So. After a week of living with the sound and the light of the sea, talking to seals, walking on rocks, and two days of living in fog, by Friday morning, tired and relaxed, I suddenly felt that I’d Got it.  Something shifted and I forgot projects and proving things to myself or anyone else and remembered to go for it and do what I do.  Takes time sometimes.
I have here written on the back of an envelope: wrote wrote wrote, photographed small moments of colour …. views from my chair by the window…blog….editing…
This interprets as:  I have two photography series to work on – one based on the small flashes of colour that appear among the rocks and the other a series of photographs taken from my chair by the window each day.  I also have a collection of writing and colour notes.  I’ve been ill and unable to do any artwork for a while.  I’m now fired up with plans for large square canvasses and a blog to put together my writing and window photographs that can link up to my art blog.  There have been offers of exhibitions at Bath Royal United Hospital and the Wellspring Healthy Living Centre.  I’m going to take my time.

Pools of unexpected colour

Pools of unexpected colour

Brisons Veor is memorable and defies words.  I sorely miss the seals and birds and most of all the sea, but feel that something huge has shifted in a seemingly small way about my expectations for myself and my future.  Thank you.

Cath O’Leary
http://www.catholeary.co.uk/