Although mainly a self-taught artist, I have always had an interest in creative activities, including drawing and painting. I was accepted for art school from grammar school, but went into draughtsmanship instead. During several other careers and bringing up our two children, I dabbled in painting, always good at drawing, but having a terrible sense of tone and colour. It is only when I retired in 2002, that I began to take painting seriously. I was given a set of art materials which cost a small fortune as a leaving present, so I had to make good use of them! I have read a lot of books on watercolour painting since that time and have learned the basic techniques. Just like learning to drive a car, it is one thing to be able to do the bits seperately, but it is quite another to put them all together proficiently. Then there is the struggle between technique and a personal style. Most of the books recommend that you start with a limited palette of colours. That way, you can control tone (contrast) more easily. Colours have their own tonal values, as well as being paler or stronger in application. Reds, for example, appear to come forward. Blues recede. Typically, I went straight for my personal preference for strong, directly applied colour and some of the earlier disasters are the result. There was some advantage to going through the early period
of colourful, but fairly incompetent paintings though.. I made a pact with myself that I wouldn't end up, like many artists, with paintings which are just a variation of a well practised theme and set of colours. Some are less proficient, but they all have impact and there is very little repetition. The first set of paintings are shown to illustrate the beginning phase of my painting 'journey'. I still really like some of them, as they remind me of great days. Some of them I am sorely tempted to remove. ALL of the subjects which I paint, I got excited about. I'm not one of those people who can produce a masterpiece of a painting of a cabbage on a window sill ... In 2009 I attended a course on landscape and estuary painting run in Exmouth by the very skilled artist and teacher Ray Balkwill. This has moved me in slightly different directions again and it will be interesting to see how my paintings develop.
I hope you enjoy looking at my work. Comments are always welcome.