I cannot quite believe it, but in my COVID-19 degrees of separation project, I’ve made 54 iPad paintings in 54 days — well, actually the true number is 55, but I haven’t shared that one on Instagram yet. (In this project I delay a day before I share, so there is always a tomorrow!)

I started the project to help me cope with separation, but now it’s catalysing connection — me with my inner worlds, and, most days, people around the outer world with me. No matter what my state of #stayathomeUK isolation, this makes me feel alive. The project is helping me (and possibly others, which is my greatest wish) to transform.

Threads are emerging in the work, some of them quite unexpected. Of course, there is SAL-style honest self-expression, and there is some magic (aka SALchemy). But also, there are strong elements of 2020 documentary — I realise, perhaps to my surprise, that one day these paintings and their stories will have formed a record of a period in our collective human history. And, the medium I chose, the iPad, was completely new to me, so there is a learning process, which seems to mirror the newness we are all living. Ahhhh, in this project so far, there have been many synchronicities.

You can glimpse paintings 1 to 54 below, in brief…

Days 1 to 16, when I was in shock, feeling sad and trying to protect my mind.

Days 17 to 32, when I was upset and scared, but starting to adjust.

Days 33 to 48, when I couldn’t sleep, but was transforming grief and anger into stronger, more energetic art, compassion for us all, and hope.

Days 49 to 54, when sleep remained elusive, but I was beginning both to master the iPad and to realise the potential power in the project.

COVID-19 degrees of separation days 49 to 54 SAL SALchemy

Can you sense the threads and shifts I’ve mentioned? I’d love to know. Why not see the paintings in more detail on Instagram, read their stories, and comment there and tell me? Meanwhile, I’ll continue painting. And, of course, my friends, I hope, with all my heart, that you and your loved ones stay safe and well.

#thejoyexperiments #salchemy #C19_degreesofseparation

The practicalities. The paintings are made on an Apple iPad Air (3rd generation) with an Apple Pencil (1st generation). I’m using the pro Art Set app.

The project was, in part, inspired by my visit to the London National Portrait Gallery in early March 2020, to see David Hockney: Drawing from Life; I loved his iPad work.

I’ll be super-happy if you share my creations. Please use short quotes from the piece if you like, but always always link back to this page.

For any other use, please ask me first.

See the journey of my paintings and drawings over the years here:


p.s. follow me on Instagram? I post a little, more often, there…