Evening in Holloway
9 x 7 inches
“I felt that I should be producing my best work with this opportunity and it just wasn’t happening. I have learnt not to be hard on myself, stop painting if it is not going so well.”Andrew Riley
Andrew’s Lockdown Story
‘Not being able to travel far for new imagery I rummaged through old folders of work that I save for re-working, chopping up, giving away! I found the ‘Rainbow over Buttermere’, looking rather lacklustre, 2 hours and half a tube of gouache later I was happy with the result. I think the rainbow was in the zeitgeist of April 2020, bit corny but whatever.
The ‘Evening in Holloway’ was done in response to a call out from the Highgate On Line Festival for images on the theme of ‘view from my window.’ I was intrigued by lights going on in every home at dusk and not a soul on the streets, I enjoyed the peace. I think the image looks rather ‘Hopperesque’ suggesting all these lives looking in on themselves.
At the start of lockdown I had moments of ecstasy when I said to myself I don’t have to do anything, no work, no commuting hoorah.
The Highgate Watercolour Group to the rescue, as each week we submit work for our Facebook post. Having a weekly deadline is a great help in motivating me to get my brushes out. Being part of this group to email, chat with etc took away feelings of isolation too.
Having an abundance of free time has produced pressures, I was planning on creating more time for my painting, now I had too much! I felt that I should be producing my best work with this opportunity and it just wasn’t happening. I have learnt not to be hard on myself, stop painting if it is not going so well. I have an escape as I have an allotment and if anything being able to go there has helped my mental well being far more.’
Text and images © Andrew Riley