Diary of the Plague Year: Day 15 30 March 2020: A thing worth doing …

It is a bitterly cold day with a freezing wind. Just finished writing a proposal for an AIR at UCD. I probably don’t stand a hope in hell but feel I have nothing to lose.

Watching the film on Vermeer was curiously sustaining considering he is such a magician. You should really feel like giving up in the face of such mastery but curiously it has the opposite effect.

There have been times when I have just felt like throwing in the towel. Sometimes it feels like too hard a life, full of petty frustrations. So it is important to keep reading about artists/watching films like this – for one thing Vermeer himself died in debt and was more-or-less forgotten about for years. And for another, because had I ever given up and had afterwards seen that film, I think I would have had a nervous breakdown at the realisation of what I had lost.

What I mean is, and to put it simply, I want to live in a world where how light falls and how you put down a small blob of paint or a brushstroke really matters. And what is exciting and really important is the juxtaposition and relationship between two colours. However badly you do it. Because a thing worth doing is worth doing badly.

Off to the studio which in weather like this is the only warm room in the house.


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