The Old Skip – oil on panel – 61 x 74 cm
I have always been fascinated by ruins I love the air of abandonment and decay. I love to see the return of nature whether it be to a temple in Cambodia or this once proud stately home in my picture.
I have never seen a skip as dilapidated as this, it looks as if it’s been in the same place for years. Although there is some evidence of human activity as the path on the right isn’t overgrown. But the building itself seems to be derelict Buddleia bushes are growing up the scaffold and grass is sprouting where there was once a roof.
I painted this picture from life a while ago. It was very pleasant to be in such a place listening to the birdsong and dimly aware of the rustlings made by various creatures as they went about their business. When you are painting on the spot especially if you’re sitting you make so little sound that the birds and the animals don’t realise that you are there.
Every picture tells a story but what is the back storey to this picture and where is this place? I’ll give you two clues, it’s less than a mile from one of the largest plague pits in London and it was once the setting for an early Sherlock Holmes story.