Things glimpsed from a moving train

This was a breakthrough painting for me in a number of ways. I started working in Edinburgh in December 2016, getting on a train at just after 7.00a.m., in the dark, coming back again, at 6.00p.m., in the dark. I wasn’t seeing daylight at all and was barely managing to make any work. Then, as the day’s started to get lighter, I first noticed this little break in the solid wall of sandstone the train cut through. Flooded quarry workings near the shale bings. I started trying to pin down a few details on paper but it was there and gone again in no more than a couple of seconds. Finally I buckled, worked out where it was on google maps and took a day off work to go and find it. There was some off road driving involved and maybe the tiniest bit of trespassing but I got a good drawing made and was able to work up a painting on the back of it. I’m still happy with that little pink flash of foliage on the right which, for me, was the message to put the brush down. It sold in the next year’s RSA Open exhibition so hopefully it’s still making someone happy

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