I was sitting in a small seaside village on the west coast of France a year ago, trying to extract some inspiration and direction for a new body of Art. In previous years I had painted oil on canvas but felt they were stilted and lacked energy and spontaneity.
In the days prior to Granville, I had gone back to the Musee DíOrsay in Paris, with a view of studying the works from a purely analytical and technical point of view, and not that of an ogling tourist. The names didnít matter. At the end of five absorbing hours and a journal full of notes and studies, I caught the train west.
I sat in my cosy hotel room overlooking the harbour for four days, analysing what I had written and what it was about certain works that had appealed beyond the norm. Patterns emerged. Techniques were revealed. Themes unfolded. From this new body of thought grew deep shadows, drama and black.
A week later I was back in my studio on the Sunshine Coast, raring to explore these ideas. I had expected to continue working in paint, but thought initially, I would capture the necessary spontaneity and energy of my concepts rapidly, with charcoal and white pastel on brown paper, a handful of erasers to remove and cut back in with, and a clutch of my favourite 7Bís pencils for quick-fire mark making. Nothing fussy. Nothing precious. Initial images loosely realised in my journal in France, soon found form and took on a life of their own. The new black and white mediums captured my ideas with the energy and fun that was lacking in those earlier paintings.
Opposite are a selection of eight of the 30 works that emerged from those heady days. They are frozen moments that I chose to draw for no other reason than to delight myself, and give voice to what I believe are important moments in my life.
But more significantly, I feel at last I have found a personal, uncompromised and unique visual style with which to tell my stories.
(All drawings opposite are charcoal, pastel and graphite on paper. Dimensions are 114.5 x 76.5 cm)
Artist's Website: www.peterhollardart.com