Personal Statement


Personal Statement

The main source of visual stimuli for my artwork is the natural environment. I enjoy recording a wide variety of naturally occurring imagery, ranging from cloudscapes to rock formations. I find the effects of light and weather conditions provide an endless and fascinating variety of possibilities to explore.

I particularly enjoy observing the shoreline, where the ever-changing conditions of tide and weather constantly reorganise the visual elements. At the coast there are opportunities to study nature on a huge or a minute scale.

My current work is based on the coastline of East Lothian, stretching from Aberlady Bay to Dunbar. This area contains a varied mix of sandy beaches, estuaries and rocky outcrops, washed by The Firth of Forth and The North Sea. The character of the landscape provides opportunities to experience and record big skies, counterbalanced by intricate rock formations that hold many pools teeming with life and colour.

The combination of sky, land and water is an irresistible one and I can relate to the many Scottish artists who have also responded to this stimulating subject matter.

Easy exposure to the works of The Scottish Colourists and The Glasgow Boys has undoubtedly strengthened my love of Scottish landscape painting and encouraged me to work in this genre. As have the works of William Gillies, Joan Eardley, James Mackintosh Patrick and Wilhelmina Barnes Graham.

My earliest influences were, predictably, Turner and Constable followed by the artists of The French Impressionist Movement. The landscapes and seascapes of Corot and Boudin were also images I could strongly relate to. And I greatly admire the work of Claude Lorraine, Caspar David Friedrich and the Dutch landscape painters of the seventeenth century like Ruisdael and Hobbema.

My current works are travelling in two different directions, although both approaches spring from the same visual stimuli. I enjoy using realism to record my responses to the natural environment but I equally enjoy working with the visual elements to create and develop alternative abstract and semi abstract responses and outcomes.

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