The ramblings of an exceptionally normal person
Art has been with me for as long as I can remember; my mother started my painting love affair off by purchasing a paint-by-numbers set for me. If I remember correctly, it was a picture of ballerinas prancing around on stage, I think my mother’s intention was to get me interested in ballet…….ya, that never really happened, but it did get me started on the blissful path of all things messy.
Throughout my school years, art had always played a huge role. Besides the standard curriculum and work required to pass the school year, I also teamed up with my partner-in-crime Andeline and together we immersed ourselves in the exciting life of theatre production, well actually it was just the annual school plays, but we took great delight in being responsible for the various set designs and costume designs as well as painting all the backdrops in the school hall. One of the most memorable projects was a mural for the the play ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’, the entire back wall of the stage was one giant magical forest, I remember using fairy lights, which was considered so high tech in those days.
I left school, and went on to an advertising college, where I learnt a whole lot of new techniques, cheats and skills to prepare me for the fast paced, commercial world of advertising. I might as well make money out of my passion right? Wrong. When one of my lecturers told us his life story (which I think was suppose to be inspirational) of how he went from a hot-shot Art Director, who drove a porch 911 and married the love of his life, to a college lecturer, divorcee with a VW Beetle as his primary mode of transport, all because he couldn’t keep up with the hellish pace that the industry expected, I realised that advertising was probably not for me.
By the end of the course I realised that advertising was definitely not for me. The career path I ended up pursuing was a *QBE in website design and development. I use all the tools a graphic designer uses but with an added benefit of being able to manipulate HTML to create great websites too. Website design pays the bills, but I have continued to paint throughout my adult life and probably always will. If I had to put a name to my painting style, it would be “Photo-realism with a macro influence”. I love compositions that are up-close and personal. For example, if my subject matter is African violets, I like focusing on the delicate inner petals of the violet, filling the rest of the canvas with opulent purple hues of the adjacent flowers, rather than painting a field of blooms dotting the landscape of a Cape Dutch farm.
I specialise in oils, but have dabbled in all types of mediums, from charcoal to ink and acrylic. I have created a few sculptures, engraved some lino boards and have sketched many portraits, but I always end up going back to what I know and love……oils. I wouldn’t classify myself as an eccentric person that creates haunted renditions of tortured souls, I’m actually fairly stable, perhaps a little too stable to see myself as a legitimate artist. Perhaps it’s due to the lack of psychedelic drugs never experimented with, during my youth? I don’t know. Well that’s me in a nutshell, from an artistic standpoint at least.
*QBE = Qualified By Experience