Ray when does your arty day start and when is the most productive part of it?
For as long as I can remember I have been arty, but nowadays art has to compete with a large garden and office work. I am treasurer for a number of organisations – so my painting tends to come in fits and starts. The Landscape inspires me the most – the light – colour.
Do you paint every day or when the mood strikes you?
Tends to be the latter – it’s more a question of getting an idea then running with it. I feel I should paint outdoors more but, as I seem to be the favourite food for mosquitoes, I mostly paint indoors. I am fortunate in having a dedicated room.
How do you start a painting? I tend to work from my own photographs – as inspiration rather than to be copied. I like to experiment with different materials and techniques, as with the collage relief paintings referred to above. I sometimes do a rough sketch first to check out the composition but only roughly indicate the main subject on the paper or canvas, then build up the painting in layers. I use a range of media depending on the subject matter
How long on average does it take to complete a painting? Typically two or three days – I often leave a painting for a while, keep assessing it and then may then revise it. Does this mean you are always satisfied with the end results? Things do not always turn out as you would expect – sometimes for better or worse. I have painted over paintings that didn't 'cut the mustard'
If you could live (or travel around that country) anywhere in the world and paint, its scenery all day long where would it be and why? Probably Argentina – a fantastic country with a wide variety of landscapes. But if you are coming to Cumbria to visit on a painting holiday go off the beaten track to avoid people looking over your shoulder! Head to The Upfront Gallery as it serves great food and there is the art to see as well
One final question Ray do you have any tips for new artists young or old? Practice makes perfect – or at least better!