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I need to write on these canvases earlier on than I usually do and this presents a problem…. what to write? Usually the paintings have formed and developed before I commit words to them. Obviously I have a sense of what they’re about but this usually becomes clearer, more in focus, the more I paint. Committing to words right now is an interesting one.

I know it has to be about the sense of place. Dartmouth is such an incredible space not just physically but for me mentally. My thought processes seem different; I can dream bigger and see clearer; problems seem like challenges and spur me on; I take time to stop and to ponder and to dig deeper than normal – and the irony is that I’m not writing this there 😦

Oooooo. Past diary extracts! Bingo! There’s one on 4th August this year, part of which would suit….. but the pieces are about more than that. The whole thing is a symbol, stitched, constructed, formed. What fabric am I made from? I love this quote from Daniel Christian Bradley in his book ‘Tailored Dreams’: “taking the fabric of our past, tracing out the frame of our purpose, cutting away the excess material, and then stitching it all together”, such a beautiful description of what I want to achieve. We sometimes pick, pick, pick at the things about ourselves that we dislike, or moments we have struggled through, almost to the point that we unravel. If only we could see the full picture and understand that even though some past events hurt like hell, they have shaped us, help form us, made us who we are today, and often they can produce beauty: that strength you find when you least expect it, that sensitivity to someone else, the walking alongside others who have gone through the same, resilience, determination, unwavering desire to live life in all its fullness. Beauty from scraps of material, off cuts, seams, joins.

I think I can start to write now…

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