Once my studio was restored, I spent wandering in and out, sitting by the fire, at the table, looking at the materials, and I got so much pleasure from being able to do this. The fire not only warmed up the bricks, it also warmed my heart.
Instead of painting on paper I decided to purchase large sheets of hardboard and I got them cut to size in the DIY Store. I covered the huge table in the studio with plastic and on top of this lay wallpaper lining paper because it is a very tough paper.
In fact if you buy a roll and cut it up to sizes that suit you, it is an excellent watercolour paper. All you need to flatten it, is weigh it down with heavy books. You then don’t feel so nervous about experimenting with paints. Nor do you waste expensive watercolour paper.
I felt the need to create an original piece of work, however, I must admit I did feel at a loss. Then very early one morning, I wandered into the studio and picked up a large piece of hardboard, propped it up on the easel, rummaged in the Garage for blue and white emulsion and using commercial paintbrushes started to paint.
I had never done this before, there was no plan, no idea what the end result would be. I just threw the paint on the board, and with great sweeping movements I became as one with the paint and the brush. It was action painting. It did not matter if it was going to end up looking like utter rubbish, I needed to do this. The image began to evolve and in a very short time I had painted a somewhat surreal image of a sea and sails.
I actually painted what was inside of me, what I felt and not what I could see. It was liberating, exciting and fun and I called it FREEDOM (see image). I was mentally freed up.
Within a week there followed more fast action paintings, all in the name of Freedom. I played with colours, shapes and used up all the old emulsion paints we had. That was the beginning of all that followed.