HOW YOU DOIN?! Ok, that’s out of the way so onto the narrative! As with a good number of the pieces that feature in ‘Retrospective 2’ ‘Friends’ was a subject that I have been asked if I would take on and I am so glad I finally have. It is always a matter of timing; a cracking piece can risk falling flat if it is released at the wrong time. This collection was planned in 2019, just as 2021 is being discussed now and despite 2020 becoming a year that is hopefully like no other it actually transpired to give this piece a whole new level of poignancy.
The scene is set within the charming ‘Central Perk’ and focuses on the iconic sofa that so many moments were filmed on. The coffee shop is full to bursting with detail yet totally empty of people, literally everyone looks to have upped and skedaddled. So, you could look at it as being down to Phoebe’s atrocious singing or Marcel maybe dropping his guts or maybe something a little different. Your piece, your call. The reason ‘I’ll Be There For You’ has taken on such a different quality is down to the fact that whilst I was creating it lockdown happened, again. Restrictions on friends and family meeting up indoors, coffee shops and other places where we loved to meet up were and still largely are all shut. So, this scene really does serve as a reminder just how wonderful it is to be free to meet with those who raise your spirits and how moments need to be cherished and embraced.
‘I’ll Be There For You’ is the first piece to feature in a new wider ‘panoramic’ format to help me squeeze in even more detail and the end result once you see it fully framed really is something special. It’s big, not ‘sofa big’ so hopefully there will be no need to… ‘PIVOT!’ There is a ridiculous amount of detail to spot! Iconic objects and moments are interpreted in my own random way, I have hidden really subtle details and my lips are well and truly sealed on those as I hope that once friends and family are able to meet that they’ll maybe spot something that you missed and so the conversation starts and memories build.
The funny thing is that ‘Friends’ used to be on non-stop years back in my house and I bloody hated it! Well, I think I did, but the reality was it was just during a period of huge stress and I couldn’t handle it. The canned laughter, the over the top one liners, I flipping despised Monica, there you go, I said it! Yet now, looking back I asked myself did I actually really hate it? Probably not. The reason I now know, is that ‘Friends’ is back on as a near permanent feature whilst feeding our faces and I really enjoy it. Monica still winds me up, but I love it. The reason for this was highlighted last night actually and personified so much of what I had hoped to be able to do.
A fundamental part of my decision to become an independent artist was to be able to spend much more time with my daughter, Olivia who was about to turn thirteen. All I did was work to survive and I barely had any time (or admittedly head space) for her. Bad eh but true.
Two years or so on and what a difference! Ok so I probably under-estimated the teenager desire to head to her room at any chance, but things are so different, my day is different, my mindset is different. Yes, the darkness is there and probably even darker, but I’m turned towards the light for sure. Last night was great, rather than heading straight back to her room Olivia stayed down and we watched a good couple of hours of episodes, and it was great, something that should be so normal but when normal was anything but normal this was just lovely. Maybe it was partially down to her seeing that I was enjoying the TV rather than feeling guilty of it being on that kept her sat for longer, but I guess it just shows how your mindset can have such an impact on people around you.