The Final Suite

Last week I laid down my brush and realised I was finished with my suite of works that would be submitted as my final pieces – eight in all. I have yet to put them in order, as if they were going to be mounted on the white gallery walls. I will take this order into deep consideration, talking to my tutor she has pressed that it is of upmost importance how the work is placed in the context of itself. It should lead the eye rather than hinder it.

Over the months in isolation, I have continued onwards in painting, at a slower pace. The respect I had for my painting constitution paid off, I didn’t paint if it wasn’t right and instead made an alternative piece – in video and charcoal. This broadening of my practise helped me immensly: it encouraged my creative thoughts and practise. I have discovered that while I am a painter I am many other things too, and to achieve the best result I have to spread my creativity over multiple mediums.

I’m happy with the final suite of works, I have only uploaded three here as I wish to keep them mostly away from the internet while they haven’t been marked still, they are still fresh to me.

There will be more to come..

Branwen / Coming to an End?

These past few weeks have flown by and my painting practise has slowed, as has everything else. I have been very interested in making films, it’s a refreshing mode of creativity, something that I feel very connected with.

My painting practise is still continuing, slugging onwards, and though I am not as productive, I’m enjoying it. I give myself time and space and paint when it feels right, I had a shock yesterday when I discovered I only had two blank boards left! Thus, I believe I am coming to an end of my BA painting practise, a few more weeks is all there is.

Branwen, 27.04.20

Between painting and my essay, I have embarked on a new artistic journey with my partner, Rezi. We are to make pieces of art, of any kind, present it to the other and allow them to respond to it. Hopefully this will create a long stream of art that grows and develops with a clear path we can look back on.

I started with Branwen, a short film that was inspired by the little blackbird in our backgarden. I wanted to make something short and sweet. The day of creation I picked up a delightfully narrow and slim blue skinned book, it was The Mabinogi, or more acurately Y Mabinogi, as it is a Welsh telling of the tale. Inside are the four main pieces of the Mabinogion, the earliest prose stories in Britain, one of which centres around the character Branwen, a beautiful young woman caught in dangerous rivalries and power struggles.

Branwen explores the nature of tales and symbolism, the gorgeous parallelism between a wild bird, delicate, beautiful and free, and Branwen, a young woman, beautiful, ‘delicate’ but containted in the hands of men, used as a pawn of alliance. Branwen is a revisit to an ancient tale, enveloping fantasy and mythicality, the abstraction of memory and of dreamy qualities that suggest more than tell.

I hope to create many more works in the future! The pandemic has closed doors but opened others, and I’m grateful – these things would not have been made if it wasn’t for it.

Light and Matter

My artistic practise has grown in relevance during isolation in the COVD-19 crisis.

I had discovered the subject of my painting earlier in 2020, it is the exploration into the sensation of meditative isolation, of being and of time in suspension. These are being expressed through paint in light and window motifs. I’m sure it’s easy to see how these things became extremely relevant as the crisis developed.

Light and Matter. 2020

The film is a sequence of shots that sensually follow rays of light as they retract off and across window frames and the space between. This is, of course, all filmed within my current, temporary home, not only is it a homage to light, but it is a homage to the space and the time we are in. The audio is a series of sounds created in my space: my voice, a chime, a bell and birdsong. These rustic sounds can all be connected to the element of air, insinuating that light materialises physically in the atmosphere itself.

This film will be a supplementary study to my main practise as a painter. It has really helped form my thoughts again and has reminded me of my desire to create as I have had a tough week trying to create through paint and I needed a new medium to work with! Living with my partner and friend, who are both artists, the former of which is an experimental film-maker has also been a huge help, just by being in their viscinity. It’s really highlighted the importance of an artist community!

I have written some more information about Light and Matter on ‘The Quarantine Art’ site, here is the link:

Light and Matter – THE QUARANTINE


Project Quarantine

We are almost two weeks into isolation now, and everything seems to be slowing down and speeding up.

Creativity never stops, it ebbs and flows, however it is a constant stream – or a deep pool which we gaze into, hoping to see the shimmering scales of inspiration within.

As I have said in previous posts, my School of Art has closed – no studio space access to any department and no degree shows. Everyone is pulling at strings to put some semblance of order into place.

To keep up motivation, I have joined a project titled, The Quarantine, in which myself and a dozen or so other art practitioners are working with our situation, rather than reject it. This project was created in response to the shut down of the exhibitions, it felt wrong for those doing the Creative Arts BA that they would be creating site specific art that wouldn’t even be shown on site. Thus this blog was effectively made.

It tracks our journey through quarantine, as a group and as individuals as we deal with the oncoming obstacles. As art practitioners we are here to create, respond and record this uncertain and unusual time humanity is facing – please feel free to follow us!

The Quarantine Art

(Here is my own personal page on the site as well — Grace Hubbard-Smith)

Do enjoy, and stay safe.


Here are the four pieces I have been working on since I left my studio to continue my painting journey in my own home.

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous ever since my departure from the Old College – the suns rays have sliced through our kitchen nearly every day and have warmed our sunlight starved faces. Hence why blue has started to appear, here and there, in my paintings.

I am trying to move forward with my work, but I’m finding that I’m not as inclined to work as hard when I’m at home. It’s a struggle but not a difficult one. Sadly, because of the environment, it is not a space where I can clear my head, especially since I am inside almost all the time now.

Visually I’m liking where these are going, in the top left and bottom right there seems to be a vast area of light that reaches over the frame. Talking with my tutor in our online tutorial we were disciussing the subtleties in the paint. This is something I wish to retain, and I fear that while painting I will eradicate those areas!

Thus I am training my eye to notice the areas of subtlety that truly work.

I hope you all enjoy these pieces! I’m currently working on a new set but will return to these every now and again – the more I do the more I learn.

New Light – (ReImagined Space)

Studio space at Fort William

Today marks exactly one week since I left my studio space at the old college. For those who are not aware, the old college was integral to my current work as a painter: not only was it my subject, and had been for over a year, it was where I had developed my painting practise to the standard I have now. I developed more in the short amount of time at the old college than I had ever before.

Therefore it was incredibly sad to leave. I felt in a way, a little heartbroken. Here was my studio right before dismantle!

Studio space at the Old College
What is left

The Old College is still a part of my work, it is the beginning and middle, however not the end. In the face of COVID-19, large portions of humanity have been restricted to their interior spaces, to their dens where we are all to hibernate until the storm passes.

As I set up my new studio at home, it comes to me that everything I have been writing about in terms of my painting, is more relevant now than ever before. I can see my paintings, the interior exteriors, with shafts of light beaming down through air dancing with dust, and see their place in this world. (I will further pursue this idea in another post)

The light here is new, and brighter. There is more of it. The sound of the sea has been replaced with birdsong. My paintings started with the Old College, but my natural absorbtion of space will change with the alternative space. The Old College wont be lost, it’s there in the roots of my painting, however something in my work will change, I feel it already. The space will be reimagined and become something that is new, and yet old.



This week I have nearly finished this small sequence within the series based off the window in my studio. I’m happy with the direction of these paintings and the direction of my practise. In my tutorial, my tutor emphasised that in the degree show, not only do works of art have to be successful individually, but they must flow as a set. The viewers eye must travel from one to the other in a helpful rather than hindering manner. To really grasp this we places this sequence against the wall, and paired them off in a row.

Not only do you see the overall sense of flow in these works, but you can also see how they relate to each other in terms of colour and if there are any overall glaring issues. My tutor pointed out that the dark reds were a little off-putting in a way that they seem to erupt from the subtlety of the painting and were a little distracting. As much as I like the colour I have to agree, so I’m going to experiment with changing the colour and see where that gets me.

The image above is the flow which I have decided is the easiest for the eye to follow, and the flow that is most beneficial to the works themselves. The dark lines on either end frame the work and the lines within the compositions direct us on to the next painting with ease.

I will continue practising this for all my paintings that I plan on displaying. It is one of the first steps in preparing works for exhibit.




Simon Adjashvili

Simon Adjashvili was born in 1949, Tbilisi and graduated from Tbilisi State Academy of Fine Arts, MA in 1979 and is currently based in Tel Aviv. This is as much as I can find on him, on his website there is no further personal information. He has exhibited all over the Middle East (mainly Israel) and Europe.

To the writer Dror Burstein, who lives in the apartment beneath him in Tel Aviv, much of Adjashvili’s work is centred around moments – a suspension of time immortalised in paint or charcoal. He captures a room, a familiar construct to us all and transforms it into something exotic, something new.  It sparks the imagination through shafts of light and expanses of material black. Our gaze is lost in these elements, it perfectly displays the brilliance of chiaroscuro.

Untitled 2013, charcoal on paper, 30 x 29 cm. © Simon Adjiashvili

Adjashvili’s images are incredibly pertinent to my own work as an image maker, like him, I am obsessed with interiors, light and imagination. I am enamoured with the way in which he captures light, his compositions and sharp edged worlds that bleed with glow. His works on paper, completed with charcoal, are much more captivating to me than his paintings. The charcoal works appear less crisp, there is strange mystery. They’ve inspired me to work with charcoal to further explore my journey into these light and space works.

Untitled, acrylic on canvas, 70 x 50 cm. © Simon Adjiashvili

I can see the light shift and move, the depth of space is tangible in his drawings. The light is delicate and detailed, small parts of these works make it very successful. This is something I am aiming to capture in my own paintings, in my own way.

Untitled 2013, charcoal on paper, 35 x 25,5 cm, © Simon Adjiashvili