What was that!?

Original mixed media abstract painting by Jan Allsopp in blues and white titled Over the Moon

Over the Moon – available only to subscribers this week 50 x 50cm. Contact me.

The last few weeks have been like travelling on a high speed train. While you’re on it you sit comfortably watching the slightly blurry surroundings and not really having any sense of how far and fast you are going. Then when you get off you’re thinking “Wow, was that it, am I really here? How fast was that? What was that? Where am I after all?”

If you’d asked me how things were going during these last few weeks I would have answered something like “OK, I’m still adjusting, I’m busy on my website and I’m painting. Things are just humming along.” But I would have been wrong!

My painting has taken a real boost and I feel like it has moved forward towards where I want to go. (Don’t ask! I have no idea what that means either! It’s a feeling though, and I have it.) And not just my painting. I’ve had an idea floating around for quite a long time now. You know those ideas that are the brain equivalent of a ticklish throat? Well it’s been on of those.

Moving it from brain to action was prompted by an upcoming exhibition that the Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery is putting on next year New Year – New Work. They have given all invited artists a thick piece of plywood 50cm square (20” sq) to do with what they will. I had planned to do a painting but looking at that piece of wood sitting there… it got to me.

So I purchased a scroll saw and started cutting up bits of plywood in different thicknesses into shapes – my shapes. I scoured my paintings and sketchbooks for shapes that appear in my paintings. Turns out there are quite a number of regulars! Once I cut the shapes I arrange them into compositions. These will be painted and assembled into what I’m calling 3D paintings that will hang on the wall. It’s all terribly exciting!

Works in progress, three 3D paintings, wooden cutouts, arranged into unique compositions, waiting for paint and assembly. By Jan Allsopp

I’ve also been working larger, bigger and bolder. Wow, those three words – larger, bigger and bolder – they are the words I used to love so much when I first started painting again back in the 1990s. It’s so good to have them back in my visual vocabulary.

But this large, big and bold works come from tiny ideas – my 15cm square (6” square) sketchbooks! I’ve been using these tiny compositions to paint 120cm square (48” square) paintings. It’s been great. None are quite finished as yet – that’s another story and involves an art supply store I won’t be using any more.

Mixed media abstract painting in progress shown with the small sketchbook page that inspired it

I’ve also got a little website news. Ha! Not little. Huge! You know my website? Well l’ve been quite happy with it all except for one crucial thing… no art. What kind of artist’s website doesn’t have any art!!!??? Well mine apparently. Every time I added a gallery of paintings to my site it wouldn’t show, or I’d hate the way it displayed. I’m still not 100% happy with it but at least it shows now. And it’s all over the site! You can see my current available work here, all my paintings from the last couple of years here, and my sketchbook pages here. I hope you enjoy them! I worked very hard to get them there. How hard can it be, you ask? Hmmmm. Let me tell you!

Screen shot of Jan Allsopp's website showing the painting gallery page

Then today I got to do a half hour session on a webinar that was going out to artists from a ridiculous number of countries, and talk about my art. That was great, but what was really great was watching all the other people on the webinar talk about theirs. So many inspiring people!

There’s also some some of my work on exhibition in The Art Space Urunga until the middle of November so if you are local I’d love you to see it. There’s nothing like seeing it in person. Let me know when you’re going and I might be able to meet up too.

So as I alight the October fast train, I have very little sense of where I’ve come from and not much more of a sense of where I am now – my head is still reeling and asking “what was that!?”

This blog post is still not quite weekly and neither are my studio videos, but here’s the ones since last blog post in case you missed them. I am slowly getting more regular and thank you for your patience with me! Those of you who also signed up to receive my Available Art magazine monthly will be receiving the very first issue very shortly. Yes, that’s another thing that’s happened this month too. Yay! It’s all happening!



Until next time – be happy!

Comments 1

  1. I love the little book – big painting comparison! What an interesting process and technique.

    I also am really excited about the 3D paintings. It’s fascinating when we go back and translate our own visual language into new art forms. We can learn so much about what is essential to what we want to communicate. I love seeing artists work across mediums – its always so informated. Degas in particular comes to mind!

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