‘Neutral buoyancy’ is neither sinking nor floating.
Another world lies beneath the sea, its darkest waters as unknown to us as the unexplored galaxies. It is so quiet, your exhaled breath bubbles toward a yellow veil above the water’s surface. Each sound is muffled, so as not to break your focus. This balancing act, with your flippered feet in motion, leaves you with your thoughts.
Whilst remaining calm and focused on breathing, you also feel the silent dread of your own mortality creep into the vast ocean. But in this cushioned, anti-gravity sphere, you can fly slowly and capture your surroundings. You save the memory for later nostalgia.
The light above is safety, whilst the depths below are full of fear yet curiosity. As you continue to focus, those bubbles take with them your anxiety. You are a silent presence in a world far from security and comfort, but full of promise.
You allow yourself to explore, but with the scuba diving instructor still in your vision.
White roses are traditionally associated with new beginnings, as white as a bridal gown. They may not be as loud as their coloured counterparts, but their understated beauty flaunts in their layered tones of white, playing with light and shadow.
On the first day of Spring, there is no overcast to be seen, but rather an empty sky and a scorching sun. The artist sees this from her studio and, after a long winter, is eager to capture the changing seasons. As if stealing a palette from the sky, her background is sapphire. In her ever-flourishing garden, the muted white roses provide that dramatic contrast that the artist desperately seeks. With a bed of sun-lounging roses below, only the fighting few climb upwards, their tightly closed buds unravelling, their faces exposed. She uses a thin brush to trace their intricate stems, before sculpting her white paint into oval shapes on the canvas.
When the seasons change once more, and we return to shorter days and colder nights, these white roses are a gesture of remembrance. A farewell to summer, but a promise to return, their purity expresses a quiet optimism for the future. This painting says, ‘I’m thinking of you’.
The squeaky wheels of my friends bikes down the street and then, ‘Are you coming out to play?’
In my worn denim, only on the arches of my feet do I reach the windowsill and pull myself on the seat. I look out onto our garden, hoping to see the bright and beautiful colours of Spring.
The yellow daffodils and tulips are the first to bloom, firmly rooted and drinking in the sunshine. I look over to the orange roses, my favourite flower, and noticed their buds are still closed. Today brings the possibility of change, of growth and opening.
I look back to the gravel pathway and notice two new bicycles strewn across carefreely. I rush down the hallway, catapulting myself down the stairs using the banister. My trainers are placed by the front door tactfully by mum, which I put on whilst sitting on the doorstep, greeting my friends. After a lengthy debate, we decide to play hide and seek. Without warning, one child puts his hands over his eyes and we quickly scatter, the overcrowded flowers brushing our legs.
I lean against the large, ancient oak tree, with my fingers feeling the grooved bark. I slide down the trunk, making myself as small as possible.
There is a unique silence of this Saturday afternoon, with only muted counting in the distance. It opens my ears to the blossoming garden, closed buds pending. The orange roses behind me finally burst open, causing my head to swivel. Their bold and fiery petals fascinate and draw admiration, specifically a childlike wonder.
Red roses are part of a universal language which expresses endearment.
In Western culture, they date back to Greek mythology with red roses growing from the tears of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love.
In Eastern culture, roses are titled the ‘Queen of Flowers’ for their uplifting and medicinal powers.
These roses are nurtured and grown by humans, to be gifted and exchanged between humans. The deeper the shade of red, the deeper the commitment.
This was no special occasion, but rather felt like any other morning. I dozily walk down the stairs, but the sensory surprise awaiting quickly nudges me awake: my kitchen is in full bloom. An exotic, powerful scent reaches my nose before my eyes lay upon these flowers.
My blushing cheeks and upturned lips match the roses that were lovingly wrapped and tied with a sapphire bow. I lift them from the counter, their jade stems heavy in my arms, like a sleeping child. I stroke their velvet petals and am further enveloped by their scent.
The roses are an arresting colour, which demands to be seen and admired by those around them. As light enters from the kitchen window and I turn to face the sunrise, the colours of jade and scarlet are imprinted in my mind.
Whether they are invited to live in our homes, or in our gardens, the bright crimson colour and sweet fragrance draw us to them. I am always asked who the flowers were from, as if that person can be credited for the beauty of such a flower. Regardless of who bought the flowers, it is a reminder of simplicity in love and feeling.
Occasionally, I have been allowed to see a magical world, which disappears as quickly as it arrives.
I am not able to predict when the light shines through the cluster of trees outside the landing window, and it’s beautiful outcome: a dramatic silhouette across the mauve wall. For a moment, the whispering shadows are able to speak, exclaim even, over the idyllic roses. For a moment, they seek desperately to come to the forefront; They no longer wish to be the understudy, but the main spectacle of my viewing.
I am astonished to discover a new element of these roses, purely by coincidence. I was once gifted these flowers: a timeless ritual and a kindness that will always be rewarded.
The amorous rose always speaks to someone special. The sentiment is then treasured for some time, as the flowers open themselves to us and reveal mother nature in her glory. I cup one of the roses to my nose, breathing in its pale, snowy petals.
Their purity proves to me the sincerest of intentions. I feel their loving and tranquil presence just steps from my bedroom, in the hallway.
I am also eager to get my timings right, and to see the theatrical shadows cast once more.
The pleasure of fresh flowers in my home is the gift which keeps on giving.
Hi everyone! My name is Amber, and I am currently working with Lisa as her assistant.
After revamping this platform so that you guys are able to easily access and potentially purchase Lisa’s artworks, I thought I would introduce myself in anticipation of my upcoming posts on WordPress.
So, a little bit about myself.
I am a twenty-one-year-old graduate from the University of East Anglia with a History of Art and English Literature degree. Since then, I have been so fortunate to work with Lisa in a position not only relevant to my degree, but also one from which I have learnt so much already.
For many art consumers, it is important that the artwork tells a story. For something to become a permanent addition to your home, it needs to reflect your individual taste or style, and you need to love it for what it represents.
Visually, it provides a sense of escapism, like a permanent window into a beautiful summer day whilst we move into the colder winter months. Reading up about an artwork provides a different perspective that can educate and influence the consumer, which only adds value to their viewing experience.
I am very passionate about creative writing, having written many, many essays during my time at university! Recently, I have been writing artwork descriptions for Lisa’s artworks, which has really fuelled my imagination. Working from Lisa’s art studio, I tend to have the artwork in front of me as I am writing as a reference.
For example, ‘Victorian Roses’, which sold this month:
From my first look at this artwork, my imagination ran away with it!
My immediate thought was that the square composition was almost like a theatrical camera shot, with the fragile, white roses strewn across the cold, hard tiles. Because of the romantic connotations of roses, I envisioned a heated exchange between two lovers, perhaps one of betrayal. The colour of the roses, however, is symbolic of purity, innocence & new beginnings, further contributing to the dramatisation of this artwork.
Overall, I think the combination of artistic talent and a creative description was what led someone to fall in love with ‘Victorian Roses’.
Please do comment with any suggestions you have for further blog posts you’d be interested in reading, or any content that you would like to see in the future, from the inside story of working in Lisa’s studio.
My second solo exhibition, ‘Tones of Velvet Bohemia’ will be taking place at The Alfred East Gallery in Kettering mid November for 4 weeks, so I am working hard towards that at the moment. There will be around 20 new paintings on the theme ‘Tones of Velvet Bohemia’ in a variety of different sizes – the challenge was to decide on the name for the exhibition before I’d done the paintings!!
I have a vase of artificial white roses in my hall – I’m not really a fan of artificial flowers but these were long stemmed and elegant with a papery randomness about their petals.
Occasionally – and I haven’t worked out how to predict it – a shaft of light comes from between the trees outside and casts this poignant shadow across the wall. It is so beautiful and unexpected and only lasts a short time. It’s like being allowed into a magical world for a moment and then just as quickly, it’s gone.
‘Neutral buoyancy’……weightlessness, feeling suspended, neither sinking nor floating.
A state of calm & balance, focusing on your own breathing and mortality, allowing you to fly slowly in a mainly silent, multidimensional, cushioned world. If sound comes, it comes from all sides, muffled and unsure of direction.
The light above is golden, the depths below are terror and intrigue. Slow steady breaths dispelling the anxiety of silently entering an uninvited other world….
I learnt to scuba dive in December and the feeling was so extraordinary I came home
and painted it. The words above describe how I felt and what I painted. I thought the painting needed some explanation as it is a little different from my normal style but I also thought that you don’t have to be a scuba diver to recognise some of these thoughts & feelings. I would be very interested in any feedback on this painting, I did give myself free rein & was a little surprised at how it turned out! Please feel free to comment.