In this now winter, the trees stripped, colours neutralized by white skies and a layer of snow, I am aware of the line of things: the line of branches and bark, and of the whitened roofs of the low buildings, usually brick-red. All is outline and inner-line.
A clump of stubborn grasses bristling through snow.
An icicle brought back from a walk with my younger boy and planted in the window-box amidst holly, evergreen boughs, and last Summer's long dead flowers.
The colours of Winter have been showing up in my paintings, as in this detail. When this layer is dry, I plan to add Winter's lines. Many, many of them. I can't wait to see how they manifest themselves.
Another inspiration for line is Egon Schiele. Last month, I saw an exhibition of selected works on paper. His use of line is astounding. It is confident, frenetic, unsettling, and completely unified. His works are strong, sometimes shocking, disturbing, and touching. He manages to capture the essence of what it is to be human with his coloured drawings.
To think he only lived to 28.
Nature and great artists like Schiele. The same power, and struggles, and beauty, and wonder, and absolute knowledge that it can be no other way.