Meet The Artist

Issue 41


Did you always want to pursue a career in art?

When I was at school I showed a lot of promise in art class and it was expected that I would follow an artistic path. I really wanted to be a cartoonist for a newspaper or design LP covers for bands. As the time to leave school approached I seemed to lose my love for artwork and my interest in following an artistic path eroded away with it.

Career path…

I trained as a paint sprayer with Benfield Motors after school and spend 10yrs there before moving into heavy industry at the Alcan Aluminium Smelter. I spent 14yrs there and during that time I started sketching again, just to see if I could still do it really. I had instant success in selling my pencil drawings and the bug bit me again. When Alcan closed down I found myself unemployed for the first time in my life. I took several jobs during the next few years as I continued to explore my artwork. I was by now in many galleries and had moved into acrylic paintings then onto oil paintings. Finally the time came to make the jump to a full time artist as my other work was “getting in the way” of my art. Through the help of several local galleries, especially Northeastartcollective and Blagdon Gallery, and my publisher, I now sell my work all over the country.

What should people expect at your exhibitions?

To smile! My artwork is heavily based on nostalgia and of times no longer with us which some will argue were better times. I try to tell stories with my paintings and always look to get some humour in there also. For me art should not only be beautiful but also fun.

What do I enjoy most about my job?

Bringing joy and happiness to people as it doesn’t get any better than that. If my artwork can put a smile on someone’s face then it’s all been worth it. Simple as that really. What is the most challenging aspect of your work?

The most challenging aspect of my job is a self imposed one really. The motto I use is that the next painting always has to be better than the last one. The constant striving to improve technically and composition wise is a demand I place on myself. As I am a self taught artist with no formal training at all it’s sometimes frustrating when I know a certain look I want but I have to practice on how to achieve it as I go.Having said that it can also be great fun and very rewarding. I may not always achieve my motto but it’s not through lack of trying.

Who are your Heroes?

I don’t really have any heroes. I admire many people. In the art world I really like Bob Barker, Craig Everett and Tracy Savage and the artwork of American comic book artist and author/film producer Frank Miller. I also think Tarantino is a genius of his time. Outside of the art world I admire anyone who has made a difference in a positive way and left their mark in life.

What are your forthcoming plans?

To paint the perfect picture! I’m very motivated and determined to take my artwork as far as I possibly can and explore new avenues and ventures. I’m very very lucky to do something I love for a living and it would be wrong of me to just settle for what I’ve already achieved.

How do you like to unwind?

I like to socialise as much as I can and I’m also am a bit of a sports nut. I really love Motogp and the NFL. I used to be football mad but the way the game has gone is not to my liking. I also like to go and watch live music but as I don’t have a particularly mainstream music taste I don’t get to see as many concerts as I’d like.

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