This painting, now a confident image, definitely grew into itself.
I regularly take walks around the coastal area where I live looking for stimulation for my next painting. I’ve often stopped at this point and deliberated upon whether or not it would make an interesting picture. For an artist, there’s really little of great significance to grab hold of but I’ve always felt it has a warmth; it’s a happy, peaceful place. I felt hundreds of people had innocently passed this way leaving an invisible footstep; an imprint on the passing of time, completely oblivious to their participation.
Eventually I settled down and decided to make a start. Studying the many reference photographs I’d taken, I thought, as I was still unsure of the subject, I’d approach it with watercolour first before taking it to a larger oil painting. I was pleased to have made this decision because when I reached the completion stage, I felt it was missing something – something big. It wasn’t giving out the message I’d tried to encapture. Dejected, I left the painting for a few weeks and was about to discard it as a failure when, driving back home from another walk, I saw a flock of seagulls in a flurry above me, swooping and diving in a frenzy. I immediately knew what I had to do and couldn’t wait to get back indoors. I grabbed my brush and picked up the shunned painting from its dark corner and set about presenting the scene with the missing birds. Voila! There was my heart.