Portrait of a February

These paintings were among the first I made on my return to making art. They are simple and straightforwards. At the time they were literally just a way of getting my skills back after 15 years away from painting so I turned to my immediate surroundings for convenience, but with the benefit of hindsight they provide clear markers to many of my ongoing interests.

They picked up on the fascination with spatial representation I had as a student. It also became obvious that I had a fascination with everything being specific and an empathy for weather. They were also the starting point for my realisation – then not understood or articulated – that we see through glimpses and build up an understanding of the world by comparing fragments of it and so it is better to produce multiple paintings of a subject that it is to produce one view. I am almost tempted to describe this approach as following on from analytical cubism with the critical difference that the dissonances and contradictions are spread between different pictures instead of crammed into one, thereby making them easier to absorb. Obviously this was not developed at the point at which these paintings were made but it is here that the seeds were first planted.