My painting style is loose and impressionistic, built up in layers and stages. I aim to achieve a sense atmosphere and transiency – leaving parts of the painting less worked up, and considered mark making in focal areas. I am inspired by nature and wilderness, and by the subtle differences across flora and fauna that make up specific ecosystems. I am highly motivated by colour and work predominantly in oil paint as i like the versatility of colour pigments it affords from traditional earth pigments, to impressionistic high opacity hues and chromatic modern colours. I am interested in the history of art as a response to colour availability and the creativity produced as paintings became looser and more expressive. The ability to use paint to suggest light, shade and depth in a spontaneous way intrigues me; to connect emotionally rather than making an accurate representation; using imagination and storytelling in art. I feel a painting should reflect a mood, atmosphere or feeling. When I’m observing nature i try to make note of the light and colours that create a certain character, and think about how to translate that impression into a painting.
I often use direct painting methods, and oils give the right texture and movement to be able to work a painting up without it drying too quickly. My process involves using traditional and modern techniques and materials. I work with Gamblin paints and products; they are highly regarded for their colour range and their modern alternatives to traditional turps and resins which are safer for health and the environment. I prime boards or canvasses with a mix of chalk or marble dust to add key and speed drying time across the first paint layers. Before i begin to paint I sketch an abstraction, and make tonal and colour plans for the idea. I then work up a painting usually in loosely filled colour blocks, adding detail and increasing pigment as the layers progress.