“I capture impromptu images of rainy nights in cities with my phone, some of which I choose to paint from.
Elements of wet urban night scenes that are of most interest to me include: the bustle of people striding through the rain, pausing for shelter, the pools of street & traffic lights refraction and distortion, reflections on pavements, windows and corner venues, the contrast between busy main thoroughfares and local pubs in back-by-waters. How rain at night conjures quiet, peace and stillness of streetscapes when people have reached their destinations; how areas become void of life – this dark, wet landscape demands pondering what was the backstory; as opposed to the hectic hurly burly of day in a city where the narrative unravels before ones’ eyes. I try to comprehend how wet nights reduce street furniture, buildings and objects to dark shadows which almost become dark voids; the challenge to delineate & differentiate or disregard this when I set about to paint from an image.
When I paint, I am not interested in producing photorealism; I attempt to create the ambience of slick lights, dark voids, mist, distortion, refraction, reflection, bustle, peace and the quiet stillness of moments that I stumble across on any given rainy night in a city. My paint process involves groundwork in acrylics, sketch ups in chalk, working into outlines & infills with acrylic, followed by the use of oil paints often combined with various mediums on either paper, canvas or wood.”
Text and image © Lizzie Boyle