An Introduction to Painting
About Jon. I was born in Surrey in 1958, and relocated to the beautiful county of Pembrokeshire in the early 1970’s. An introduction to painting came while attending Cardigan Secondary School. Art soon became a favourite subject and it was always something to look forward too. After my schooling years however, and now with a career as a mechanical fitter, I found little time for Art, that is until much later in my life.
The opportunity to take an Access to Art course arose in the mid 1990’s. This reacquainted me with my love of painting and drawing and I enjoyed every minute of it! My Artistic talent was recognised by my tutors and they encouraged me to take up painting seriously.
Time to re-evaluate
The chance to do this, came in 2012, when I was diagnosed with Hypopituitarism, caused by a Pituitary Tumour. This illness caused me to re-evaluate my life. I had to slow down and my work load had to be cut back!
I started by painting historic railway scenes, often on large stretched canvases. These paintings were influenced by my admiration for the wonderful-energetic work by the famous Railway Artist, Terence Cuneo. Cuneo’s paintings first came to my attention as a boy, after studying the fabulous cover illustrations on the annual Triang/Hornby model railway catalogues in the early 1970’s. It was Cuneo’s dramatic and descriptive brushwork that grabbed my attention. How could a painter create so much drama and movement in an oil painting I wondered?
I applied for membership of the Guild of Railway Artists and was successful, becoming an Associate Member! and I was lucky enough to have one of railway paintings purchased by the National Library of Wales. A fellow Artist and ex England and Gloucester Cricketer, Jack Russell MBE also has one of my paintings. Preparing the Shires is now proudly hanging in Jack’s Art collection.
Capturing the Light in the Landscape
Plein Air painting (painting in the open air with a portable easel) was first introduced to me while at Art College. This direct way of working enables a spontaneous approach to capturing the light in the Landscape. It’s an exhilarating way to paint although challenging with the rapidly changing light conditions of West Wales! Capturing this elusive light in oil paint has become the main focus of my Art.
For a few years, I worked solely out on location with my old beaten wooden box easel. But now, with the luxury of my new Art studio, I can complement my outdoor painting with the comfort of working in the studio. This allows me to produce larger paintings from material gathered in the open air. But my focus remains trying to capture the Light in the Landscape with my oil paints!