I walk through the studio and narrow my eyes at it. It stares back in a clear challenge to my authority. Even if I stop and give it a long, hard look, it is resolute in its defiance.
Who will win? In the words of that old TV gem, Iron Chef, ‘who will reign supreme?’ Will its chaos triumph and drive me to paint over it, or will I be victorious and press it into something worthwhile? The jury is definitely out.
Deep down, I fear I might be defeated this time but, by hell, I won’t be giving up without a fight. With layers and more subtlety, a strategic approach and a determination that I’ll dredge up from somewhere, I’ll give it a decent whirl.
It doesn’t have to happen today – I’m prepared for the long haul. Down the track I will either have a second-hand canvas primed for a new start, or a unique work ready for the framer. I am in the thick of a slow battle to see which it is. This will draw on every imaginative and artistic bone in my body – a challenge I hope I’m up for. And if, by chance, I come out on top, it will be a very special painting.