Soon after this Easton had his first son, which in his view made him grow up fast. He took a variety of jobs from doing classroom support at a college for post-16 disabled young people, to working in a care centre and the college library. After an extended period working in the college, and after the birth of his second child, he finally went back to higher education himself to do an MA in Illustration and Animation at Coventry University. His final University project led him to be commissioned for his first solo show at the Midlands Art Centre (MAC).
The MAC is a lovely art centre. So I had my show there, then I worked with the curator and artist Trevor Pitt. It was a really lovely project, I think it was called “A Soft Bench in a Hard Landscape”. I have worked with Trevor a few times since. From there, things just moved on, I was offered more shows, all over, a lot in America, in fact more so in America. This is the first time I have shown in London.
After a commission for a project at the Cecil Sharpe House (the English folk music and dance arts centre) in Camden in 2013, Easton moved down to London, to Archway, where he now has his studio.
So I have a studio at the house in Archway, we have a Council House in Archway, which is one of those weird five storey places, which has just one room on each floor. I have a studio in one room there.
Do you have a particular working rhythm, or do you work toward shows?
I have a weird way of working that has developed since the first lockdown really. There has been a new way of working. I will start creating a body of work without really knowing what I am going to do with it. In the first lockdown I would spend the day painting. Creating works which I had no idea what I was going to do with them, just painting because that is what I wanted to do. Then in the evening I was doing live streams of stitching (making embroideries) and talking, playing old ambient and new age tapes. Streaming on Instagram, just during the lockdown. So the paintings I made went to a show that I had in Joshua Tree, and the embroideries, along with some quilts and collages I made went to a gallery on Lake Tahoe. So, I have finished those and they have gone, and I am working on a load of paintings again, and new embroideries. These have gone to a gallery in Seattle.
So what do you prefer working on at the moment?
If I am working on an embroidery project, where I am having to stitch up to 12 hours a day over 2 or 3 weeks, I need to make stuff, so the painting is a bit like an antidote to that. It’s easy, I don’t have to really think about it, so I will just paint. Just to get back to a level where I am able to function.
"In the first lockdown I would spend the day painting. Creating works which I had no idea what I was going to do with them, just painting because that is what I wanted to do."