I must have been about 15 when I first bought some of these inks, that feels like a very long time ago now.
Thinking back in time of the people I used to know back then and I wonder what they’re doing now. I haven’t used these inks really since I first bought them, although I have done too many projects, but these pots of ink have never really been needed until now…
Some of them I didn’t even buy but found when I was helping to clear an old abandoned school, it was the strangest thing, this school had obviously been fully active and then one day the bell had gone for the last time and everybody just left and never came back. There were still jumpers on the back of chairs, old pads and workbooks, cups in the canteen, but the people had gone. I was part of a youth project and they told us we could take anything we wanted as long as it was going to a good cause, it was like a playground, us desperately trying to unscrew tables to get them down flights of stairs, running pin boards and swivel chairs to the van that we had rented for the day.
And in one of the cupboards was a box of inks, I couldn’t believe it, their incredible colours still so vivid just sitting there in a cardboard box.
They stayed with the youth project for a number of years until eventually even the youth project came to an end, and as I packed up the project, a project that had run for seven years, I came across this old box of ink which nobody else had claimed.
They’ve moved with me from house to house, I’ve moved too many times, work and life always too chaotic, maybe I get bored too quickly, I’m always looking for the next amazing thing to be part of.
And now these inks are scattered across my desk, my sad brushes daubing colour onto crisp white envelopes, the rubber of the pipettes getting old but still keeping the contents wet and bright.
So I am colouring and painting, inside and outside of the lines, as I always do, creating shapes and imagining others.