Light and drama are my inspiration in the landscape. It's the constant challenge of conveying these effects in paint that I find so fascinating.
My family were artists and art restorers, so I grew up surrounded by paintings and painting materials, and from an early age I had a creative talent. Art wasn't considered a serious career when I was at school, and it certainly isn't usually a route to wealth! Instead, I got a job in scientific research which I enjoyed at the time, but there was little need for any creativity. Around 1990 I decided to change my lifestyle and devote myself to painting. At the same time I moved from my home in the South of England to the northern hills of Cumbria. I immediately fell in love with the wild, open spaces and felt the desire to try to record my impressions in paintings. Later I continued on my journey northwards and arrived in Caithness; as far as I can go without leaving the mainland! There seems no need for that though, as this region has all I want in subject matter at the moment.
I have exhibited widely throughout Northern England and Scotland, with several solo shows. I have completed many commissioned works, and my paintings are in a number of private collections in this country and abroad, including the personal collection of HRH The Prince of Wales.
My early experience was mostly with oils and acrylics, but somewhere along the line I developed a preference for watercolours. I love their fluid nature and their ability to achieve watery atmospheric effects, which are so suitable for my usual subjects.
I work in a traditional, pure watercolour technique, building the painting from the lightest areas to the darkest. The highlights are often left as untouched paper. For this to be successful the subject has to be reduced to its essentials and any unnecessary detail avoided.
I live in Caithness, in the far north of Scotland. It is an area of farmland and moorland, bounded on one side by a spectacular coastline, and on the other by a range of mountains and the vast peat bogs of the Flow Country. The county has a distinctive character, having more historical connections with the Viking heritage of Orkney, than it has with the rest of Scotland.
See my Google Collection - A Picture of Northern Scotland