Revisiting old work [A painting for Autism Awareness Week]

When you study Fine Art at Uni you are encouraged to reflect upon the work you have created. As it’s swiftly approaching two years since I graduated from Coventry University I wanted to reflect on the style of work I was producing back then in comparison to the techniques I use now. Since University I have been diagnosed with Autism and that has had a huge impact on how I perceive my work.

I created a range of paintings for my end of year show that included a stand alone painting that was framed unlike my other work. It was a painting I was not entirely fond of compared to my other pieces and it ended up living in my studio space back at home, untouched for over a year. I have been tempted multiple times to revisit that painting and work into some more but was unsure what I would even do to it.

At the beginning of 2017 I made a piece called Patrisha where I recorded the creative process for a video. Patrisha was painted with a new process that I had played around with over the Christmas break combining both my black and white drawings with my brightly coloured paintings. Patrisha was important to the development of this new painting because she was the first painting that I had used white spray paint as a base onto the perspex before adding the inks. This base coat made the colours vivid and made the ink stay in place on the surface without sacrificing the vibrancy.

I decided eventually that I wanted to spray paint a section of that old framed painting from Uni and add a section that is refined and developed with my new technique combined with my original efforts.

My older work has more subdued colours and the overall feeling of the painting is distressed. When I initially started making my anxiety monsters they were abstract and their forms were more contorted. As my work has developed I have refined the way I approach my paintings and the shapes I use are curved and less aggressive. The combination of these two styles worked better than I anticipated and I’m really pleased with the outcome.

This painting has become one of my favourite pieces as it shows how far I have developed my work in the two years I have been pushing my self to create work and get it out into the world. I’m excited to see where my practice continues and how I could develop my work further and this painting is a celebration for me.

It’s a celebration of coming to terms with being Autistic and then using my gifts to hopefully inspire others on the spectrum and to pursue what they want to do in life because they have the ability to do so despite often being told they can’t.

I wanted to create this painting specifically for Autism Awareness Week for a reason. I have met a lot of creative people on the spectrum and they are all incredibly talented individuals that don’t pursue being creative because they are told it isn’t worth their time. Modern society still has a stigma with Autism but they are all people that have skills and dreams just like everybody else. There are few role models for autistic individuals that show them that they can to do what they love and be successful.

This is why I will putting this painting onto my online store starting from the 27th of March with 50% of the profits going directly to the National Autistic Society. I’m already giving a portion of my art earnings to the NAS this month but I wanted this painting to have a larger amount going directly to them. This money will help both the NAS continue their brilliant work and also help me fund my own artwork and continue to maintain Messy Miscreation’s future. Matilda

If you buy this piece you will receive a range of other goodies along with a written personal thank you from me. I will give the option to have the piece professionally framed with a artist signature of authenticity.

The painting can be found at:

Tomorrow there will be a post about the coping strategies I have learnt in my life to remain calm during day to day life.

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