Unable to access a life model for a very long time – yet teaching life class for years, both at Saint Martins and Bradford, it became rather frustrating always being a brush length from the subject, yet never able to paint. Eventually I decided the next best thing would be to resort to using photographic reproductions. Theses transcriptions from Poussin, Tintoretto etc enabled me to familiarise myself with the figure again until I began to tire of reproductions. So I decided on an alternative. I was living in Thornton, Bradford, which is a semi rural setting and provides grazing and livery stables for horses, a horse culture has been established for many years. Mothers and their daughters live for their horses and ponies, providing endless opportunity for studying their looks and ways. Initially the romance of the horse took hold, their wildness and power seem to offer possibilities – and a period was spent examining these. However my wife Ann although supportive of my new interest, did question my observation of detail in the paintings, as they began to find themselves a place on the walls. I could never achieve a convincing ear, so some horses began to take on the character of ferret or greyhound, or some alien life form as yet undiscovered. A basic problem being that although surrounded by the beast, I never in fact drew them from life, preparing work from the imagination. I remedied this later by combining imagination with observation. I think this is my chosen method of working still; I need the freedom of interpretation – a suggestion of narrative perhaps, or characterization. An illustrative aspect might emerge, although I wouldn’t want to force this, picture making is my first priority.


Beckermet
2005
Private Collection
Print available




Star
1991
Private Collection
Print available




Head Study
1991
Private Collection
Print available




Old Horse
1991
Private Collection
Print available




Wild Horse
1991
Private Collection
Print available




Head Study
1991
Private Collection
Print available




Wings
1998
Private Collection
Print available




Predator 2.
1998
Unavailable




Black Bird
1998
Private Collection




Predator
1998
Private Collection




Horse and Rider
1998
Private Collection
Print Available