In this series, I was seeking to capture the essence of my soul on the canvas as faithfully as possible. Nothing draws my sense of life and vigour more sharply into focus than the subject of my own mortality.
The piece is not meant to be morbid, but instead inspiring and enlightening. It’s meant to heighten the sense that life is short, and that we should live every moment as fully as we possibly can.
I chose to express these notions in light, bright hues. The painting/collage design contained within the skull is also playful and dreamlike, consisting of expressive painting and mark making, stencilled shapes, snippets of automatic writing, and several small finely honed pencil drawings, in this case a flower, some noticeboard pins, and a lit match. I’ve always enjoyed the contrast between very free expressive mark making and tight, controlled work, and sought to express that here.
The skull design itself evokes the aesthetic of old-fashioned woodcut prints and anatomical diagrams.