“Notes to myself on beginning a painting” by Richard Diebenkorn
1. Attempt what is not certain. Certainty may or may not come later. It may then be a valuable delusion.
2. The pretty, initial position which falls short of completeness is not to be valued – except as a stimulus for further moves.
3. DO search.
4. Use and respond to the initial fresh qualities but consider them absolutely expendable.
5. Don’t “discover” a subject – of any kind.
6. Somehow don’t be bored but if you must, use it in action. Use its destructive potential.
7. Mistakes can’t be erased but they move you from your present position.
8. Keep thinking about Pollyanna.
9. Tolerate chaos.
10. Be careful only in a perverse way.
On the way to France, I stopped off for one day in London with my lovely friend Amanda. We spent Wednesday afternoon in a productive session of drawing and painting, along the Thames near the Tate Gallery. With Amanda’s excellent advice I felt encouraged and supported in taking some more risks with my colour, and trying to work more with an inner feeling of the scene rather than slavishly sticking to the visible, external reality.
(Attentive readers will notice that I mixed up the numbers of the two paintings today – but, to quote Gideon Coe from yesterday’s Radio 6 Music programme, ‘no system is perfect, especially mine’)
‘Imaginings’ – acrylic on canvas board – 24 cm x 30 cm – £87