Thursday 18 September 2014

Anyone Fancy a Curry?

         I am finding it a little difficult settling down to writing a script on the kind of subjects which particularly interest me, namely matters of the spirit. In part that difficulty arises from a gentle seething inside me, a mild excitement if you like, which in turn arises from a new awareness of an experiential truth written about in my previous post on purity of heart. So instead of trying to produce when I need to reflect, I have decided to try my hand, yet again, at a watercolour painting.
         Now this an exercise which has always been fraught with difficulties for me, a project which produces partly finished (or even barely begun) paintings which I quickly fall-out-of-love with, as a result of not getting things right, the way I want them. Thus it is that my efforts almost invariably end their days in my waste bin. But 'hope springs eternal' and so once again I take my brushes in one hand, and something resembling courage (or is it obstinacy?) in the other, and attempt to do battle. This time, however, I was determined to have some fun.          
         It just so happened that whilst on one of our short holidays, we happened to espy an attractive Indian restaurant. Now this is nowhere as usual in France as it is in the United Kingdom, a unity which may, perhaps, not last for very much longer. Ever ready to support restaurants which specialise in foreign cuisines we entered and were offered a table for two.  I surreptitiously took a few photographs of the interior décor for future reference. The following are the results of the inspiration accorded me by a lovely evening sharing a curry with my lovely wife.

         First I show a simple line drawing developed from certain features that I found of interest. This line drawing is a composite of three bits and pieces, produced so that if one part was ruined, the rest would avoid a terminal visit to the waste bin.

         Second comes a tonal drawing, developed from the line drawing. Now if my past efforts are anything to go by, this is the point of highest enjoyment. Wisdom would indicate that I should stop at this point, but in for a penny, in for a pound, as the saying goes. Yes, I put paint to paper ..... sort of.

         So, third comes the completed effort. It was unclear to me just how I was going to treat certain features of this picture, but if (as did by happy accident) the piece took on some aspects of fantasy, then I would not be displeased. The important things about this picture are that I enjoyed the very experience to the end; I did actually complete it; and although I will now file it away out of sight, I felt I did learn from the experience.

         And now I can turn to other matters.

[Note:  I do not know how a reader will be viewing this picture, but the original colours are quite deep and strong - quite the opposite of pastel.]


  1. What a teaser of a title - I was expecting a recipe for one of your famous curries!

    I am delighted for you, and for me, that you took up pencil and paint. Interesting contrast between the architectural background and the jar/vase, and the transformations that take place. The second piece seems complete in itself and has a very meditative feel. The final piece with its colours is very different (of course) and has lovely areas of watercolour textures. The meaning behind the floating vase is a mystery to me but I'm sure it has much importance to you, and that is what counts.

    Thanks for sharing, Tom! More, please!

  2. Tom, I agree with Marja-leena about the tonal drawing - it is a complete work in itself. I love the way that shapes almost disappear into the light but also their beautiful precision.
    While the watercolour effects are very attractive in themselves, I think that they overwhelm the objects. It could almost be a different painting, without those objects at all. Anyway, please do go on painting and drawing!

  3. Hi Tom
    Pleasing to the eye, whether of very deep colours or verging on pastel, a calming image worthy of display.
    Best wishes

  4. Terrific! Your painting skill far exceeds my doodles. Main thing is, as you wrote, "I was determined to have some fun." And that's what it's really all about.

  5. The tonal drawing appeals to me because the mid-section looks like a veil, and veils represent the barriers, if you will, between selves, between worlds, between the spiritual and the corporeal.

    Lovely work, Tom.

  6. It appears I'm in agreement with the majority, Tom, by liking the tonal drawing most of all. It's a very fine and mysterious image.

    Sometimes, though, the spirit calls out for colour and the ones you've chosen to illuminate your vision are rich. Yes, let's have more Visions.

  7. I'm impressed by your talent, Tom.
    All I can see are lines, straight and clear, that maybe reflect your thinking and way of life and then the readiness for joy and play.
    When I read your heading, my first thought was to tell you that a made some Dahl the other day.

  8. Thank you everyone for your helpful comments. I, too, prefer the tonal drawing but did need to go on to complete a painted picture, if for no other reason than to cross a hurdle. I am still mulling over where I go from here, but go somewhere I certainly will. Thank you all again.

  9. I am constantly amazed by the talent I discover in my fellow bloggers. Makes me feel like a bit of a bugger. Your original drawing and your final painting are excellent, Tom. Damn you and all your talents!

  10. Bless you Bruce, but never forget your talent for making people laugh.

  11. well, looks like i'll have to throw my vote in with the rest of your followers. there is a disturbing quality to the last painting, not at all evident in the middle one. i am quite quite impressed by them all!

  12. Thank you Agnieska. There are various forms of fantasy painting. Rather than opting for what is usually science fantasy, I did try to aim for some 'otherness', a mystical fantasy perhaps. Maybe it will show itself in future; I don't yet know.

  13. Dear Tom, I'm so delighted to see all three of these works from your hand, and most especially to read that you enjoyed the process. Rather than offering criticism or preferences, I just want to reiterate how pleased I am to see these, how much I appreciate them all, and how much I hope you'll keep exploring in this area as well as the others. A marvelous step!

  14. Thank you Beth for the encouragement.