Wednesday, May 4, 2011

An exhibition of paintings... me.

(please excuse the quality of the pictures, many of these are photos of photos of the paintings)

I used to paint, I don't any more. I have always 'felt' artistic, and when I first moved to Ireland I tried to find expression for my creativity through painting. I tried a few kinds of media first, but fell in love with oil paints after my mum and dad gave me some for my birthday. This was my first ever attempt at oil painting. It is a picture of a wrecked boat that was grounded next to the harbour in Cobh. Technically I was really pleased with the painting and Andy loves it so it still hangs above our fireplace and probably always will.

As well as trying different media I also struggled to find a subject I liked to paint. For a time after starting painting I really wanted to do a portrait of Rebe. I held off and held off because I was so scared I would never be able to her justice.

Although I don't think I did do her justice, (is it truly possible to capture the beauty of people in pictures?) I think that I captured a special moment in time. I used to love watching her in just a wee vest watching the bath water fill, the excitement and anticipation on her face.

I started doing baby portraits for a while after that. I preferred to do non-formal poses...

My friend Amy's special twin boys. I painted this as a welcome to the world gift.

This was a commission from another friend of mine. The woman is the baby's godmother. They didn't manage to get a photo of them together at the christening so she asked me to paint one of them together using 2 separate photos of the day.

This is a copy of an Ingres painting called 'The Bather'
It is one of my all time favourite paintings and I loved painting her. The painting is about 4 foot high and hangs at the top of the stairs. It is another one that I hope will always hang :-)

This last painting was from a series of monochrome paintings I did.

All of them were of people in 'real life'; not too pleasant situations. I loved painting these and they really seemed to speak to people; all 6 of the series sold.

I liked painting these because they made me realised that painting was a pretty powerful voice. By sharing these images with others I could tell them how I felt about certain issues and situations. It was an incredibly powerful realisation and it prompted me into looking into doing workshops with people 'at risk' using painting as a means of constructive social criticism...but I fell pregnant with Benny and my love of painting ground to a halt.

I have fallen out of love with painting, it is too much effort to find a place for my paintings to be painted, to dry and to be shown. For a few years I created very little (apart from children) and then I discovered crafts, particularly knitting and working with felt and more recently doll making and sewing.

I may come back to painting one day, in fact I have quite a strong image of my future self; in my 50's, my kids grown and gone and myself living quietly, painting.

But for now art isn't so important in this house...well who needs it really when you have the washing machine to entertain you ;-)


  1. You are very talented Laura! Thank you for sharing these, I love them all.

  2. Wow, Laura. . .! You are so amazing! <3
    Thank you for sharing!

  3. I'd never seen your monochrome series before, have you any pictures of the rest of the series? Very unusual/interesting.
    You DID capture Rebe as I know and remember her, and my god, to know the twins now and wow you really got them. They'll be grown up and you'd still know it was Charlie and Taidg (Sorry Amy I never know how to spell his little name).
    I ALWAYS love that picture of the boat above your fireplace.... and can see why Andy loves it too. You get lost in it, you feel as if you are on the quayside looking right at it and being carried away with your thoughts of the day. My favourite times and place to be as by the sea looking out and at the shore where the seas create such amazing creativity in all the rough and calm waters. LUSH!
    Painting will come back to you no doubt about it, but you need a quiet space, ha ha and quiet time. :) God I live for the future for that time alone :) Great that you shared these with us all.

  4. thank you:-)
    Lynnette, no I hsve only one other photo of the series and that's very poor quality...always the way I'm afraid! x

  5. I love your paintings. They are beautiful. I especially like the first one with the boat. I hope that you will come back to painting as you obviously have a real talent. I can understand how it would be impractical now though!

  6. Beautiful! My favorite is the first one. The oil painting of a ship. You have a talent!

  7. You left out the portrait of James Joyce you painted for my birthday.

  8. Those are fabulous. I think it's hard to get skin tones right but you are well able to do it, it was a pleasure to see your work here.