I got a lovely card through my door the other day from a resident of our estate whose home has featured in some of my drawings. She loves my work and was excited that her wall is in my drawing (below). Not only this but this drawing is currently on display in the Ferens gallery here in Hull.
I've used this wall and this specific corner of the estate a few times and I'm currently working on a new piece which features this location. I think this spot best represents the essence of the housing estate. It's geared completely towards pedestrian access as it was built before the era of mass car ownership. Footpaths wind between the terraces and large trees line the long green stretches of grass. Communities will never be built this way again. I find this fascinating and sad.
Some of the rows of hawthorn trees are relics of the hedgerows of the farm that occupied this site from the medieval period up until when the houses were built. This was the first drawing I made of the place 5 years ago. It shows the row of hawthorn trees -- a special place to me for many reasons.
I also painted the spot for my degree show in 2015. The proportions of the work are distorted to allow it to be viewed within a VR app on a phone. Wearing the headset you are immersed within
the painting as you gaze around it in 360 degrees.
My next work (mentioned above) is going to be my most dramatic yet. There will be angels and also a scene from Dante's Inferno, all squeezed within this most ordinary corner of Hull. I'm very excited about it. It's going to be the most ambitious piece I've ever worked on and will probably weigh in at around 2 metres tall.
I want it to capture the spirit of the great works of the renaissance. I've been practicing the medieval engraving style and have just finished this drawing in preparation.
The letter was great though. It made me happy. This woman really appreciates my work. It brings her pleasure and hopefully helps us all to see this ordinary place in new ways. That's all I want. This is a wonderful place to live, such a friendly and peaceful community. So I'm poor and I'll never be a rich and famous artist like Damien Hirst or Sarah Lucas. But I love what I do and a few other people do too and that's all I need.
I'll never compromise my principles.