At the age of 24, I’m privileged to be able to say that I have had a successful art career for over 7 years. When I dropped out of college, aged 16, I never dreamt that I would have the honour of exhibiting alongside some of my art heroes – Pip Mcgarry, Tony Forrest, and Steve Burgess. Some of the most down to earth and friendly guys I’ve met in the business so far. I certainly never imagined that I would be able to put together a solo exhibition, and have a sell-out show by the time I was 22.
All of which was achieved on my home turf, in a local gallery, who took me on when I was fresh out of a failed college course. We worked together and expanded for more than 5 years.
There are days when I’m still not sure any of it really happened.
One of my ambitions when I first started, was to produce work that didn’t require paragraphs of “annotation” (rambling written work to explain, describe and sum up your piece of work.) I’ve always believed that if it has to be explained, it isn’t working. “Art that speaks for itself” became my goal and I like to think that I’ve managed it.
Despite what I was taught at college: “Painting from nature is a useless talent” - my inspiration, my passion, comes from nature. I developed my up-close, detailed style of painting because I like to see each strand of hair, every wrinkle and as much character as the original animal. Vincent Van Gogh said:
“It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality, is more important than the feeling for pictures."And I can only hope that you like it too.