Who or what is the biggest inspiration for your art?
I’m not sure it’s possible to select a single biggest inspiration – there are a few. On a personal level my father introduced me to painting very early on and was always encouraging me and my sister in our creative pursuits. He was a talented artist himself (although I doubt he would have been happy being called that!). My wife is also an artist and she is certainly a major influence on me. Her work is entirely different to mine, but the quality, integrity and intensity of it always amazes me. I wish I could make work as powerful as hers. When I’m working, it’s the paint itself that I find inspiring. It’s natural qualities – the texture, colour, the way it moves and behaves. This is the reason I am a painter specifically – because I am inspired by paint.
Please tell us more about your working process and the way you approach new artworks
Generally speaking I know pretty much what I’m going to do when I start a painting. Initially I go through a process of making various small test pieces to figure out compositions and colour combinations or to test out and establish specific paint behaviours. From these tests I will then form a idea of how a larger painting or series of paintings will be made. I find having this plan in place when I start allows me to better indulge in the enjoyment of the painting process, safe in the knowledge that the creative decisions have already been made.
What motivates you the most in your artistic journey?
Simply the opportunity to paint. I love to do it and nothing motivates me more intensely or consistently than that base urge to apply paint to a support and create a beautiful object.
Who or what has recently impressed you?
I try to see as many exhibitions and visit as many artists as I can. Generally speaking the studio visits are the most exciting and impressive. Recent standout studio visits I have made include artists Mark Francis, Dominic Beattie and Simon Leahy-Clark.
Which artist, dead or alive, would you want to have a beer with?
I am fortunate in that there are many wonderful artists I have a beer with on a regular basis! that being the case, if I had to choose a dead artist I think it would have to be Robert Motherwell. I find his paintings absolutely stunning, particularly because their forms are alien to me. Working the way I do – planning a painting before executing it and working with geometry – I find it very difficult indeed to conceive of how he came up with his dynamic, fluid marks and how he worked intuitively, making formal, compositional decisions in ‘real time’ as his paintings evolved.
How do you spend your free time besides artistic work?
As I’m sure is the case for all artists, I like to visit exhibitions as often as possible. I also play football once a week and of course try to spend as much time with my family as I can. I’m partial to the odd decent Sci-Fi or horror movie too.
Do you have any dream projects in mind that you would like to do in the future?
Plenty! I’d really love to do a show of large paintings. I have a series of 7 planned, and I will make them bit by bit, but it will be a long process I think, and I will only start working on finding somewhere to show them once they are all finished (or at least 5 or 6 of them are). I think they will be ongoing, in the background whilst I work on other projects.