Cornish Artist Based in Ballina/Byron Bay, Australia. Since a child I've been influenced and surrounded by the art scene of St.Ives and the Newlyn School. I enjoy capturing the energy, movements and narrative in the landscapes and the connection to land and sea.
I consider myself a self taught artist, I graduated from University for the Creative Arts at Maidstone, UK, with a First Class Honors degree in Illustration. With an adaptable drawing approach I started my career working in advertising, by story boarding as a Creative in M&C Saatchi, at which point I realised my style was too "painterly" than commercial/, but continued to pursue a career in Graphic design to support my art. I like to try and evoke the moods, atmosphere and movement that I feel from location. I am driven by being physically in the landscape working on plein-air sketches, capturing different compositions and narratives from nature, whether that's people, wind or waves, and this is done with more gestural strokes and mark making in studio, for me landscapes and scenes should always be moving, there's always emotion and doesn't always need to be reflected by colour.
How I work
I strive to create work that is always interesting, each time you look you may see something else or feel something else especially when the place maybe familiar to the viewer. A lot of my work in black and white, which I just love creating, maybe it's the design side of my brain that likes clean/bold sections and deep contrasts, but everything needs balance. I like combining realist with abstract style compositions, sometimes these are more expressionistic and I love working with the mistakes or unknown gestures that can happen.
I'm not tied down to the mediums I use, but I use mainly Acrylics due to it's quick drying effect, which also aids when working outside. My early surf-based landscapes are small and in black and white, something that I’m naturally drawn too and worked with since an early age and it is a way of working I connected with, I just love the tonal ranges that can be created, the moods and the feelings that seem more suggestible. I'm now working on much more larger canvas and exploring my expressive side - it was inevitable to go bigger as many artists do ;) but it's so much more free for me to capture essence of the location.
I usually start with rough location sketches followed by photographic references that I have taken on site. I like to work quick, expressively using any tools close by including my hands, I try and not get too caught up in the detail, strip the scene to a basic form but still keeping all the elements - being detailed but not, if that makes sense, when that's achieved wahoo! I can finally stop working on the painting.
Influence: I like many post war modernist artists of St.Ives such as Peter Lanyon and Patrick Heron, but also painters such as Turner and the Newlyn School artists like William Ayerst Ingram. Before attending university and knowing what I was doing as a young adult I used to work in the Tate Gallery in St.Ives, it was a great being exposed to the local art scene and the local seaside towns in Cornwall during my childhood. Spending large amounts of time as a gallery assistant observing amazing sculptures at Barbara Hepworths museum as well as learning about the history or modern art and new artist exhibitions in the Tate was a big eye opener. As a child I have memories of John Millers work too, a painter who often depicted the Mediterranean beaches of the Isles of Scilly off the coast of Cornwall, his paintings where very balanced and vibrant. At my home in Sancreed, John lived down the road in a big house next the village church with his brother Micheal, I used to walk his dog for him in return for a chocolate bar or small pocket money, it was great as I often saw him working away in his studio among his pool of goldfish and birds - subconsciously as a child I think it was this lifestyle of an artist that became an appeal to me. My father also is a very talented individual, like myself he grown up in the local area in Pendeen and set himself to become a potter, he was one of the baby boomers who was living the time of the post-modern movement and was trained by one of Bernard Leach's apprentices using traditional old oil fire kilns, as child he always helped me draw and play around with art materials he had lying around at home - a good teacher. It might explain why I get more "hands-on" when I paint, I'm almost sculpting the paint on the canvas into what i want and it becomes more expressionist working in this way.
There lots more to say... if you want to know more just get in touch or follow me on Instagram and Facebook to see what I’m up to daily.
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