1) What is your inspiration for painting? What made you want to pursue a career in art?
My inspiration for painting comes from a fascination for detail from a very young age, studying pictures in books when learning to read and being surrounded by art. When I was growing up, art was the main marketing medium, before computers, and as such I grew up with art all around me. This made me interested in art and it’s techniques very early on.
2) What got you into doing sports paintings? / Do you do any other artwork outside of the sports realm? If so what else?
As a teenager in the mid 80’s growing up in England, NFL was a new and exciting sport being broadcast on our TV’s. I was immediately attracted by the colours and vividness of the sport, and started drawing my favourite teams and events. Aside from sports, I draw and paint iconic subjects from my youth, such as paintings inspired by videogames and popular culture. I’m currently working on a series of paintings of classic and well loved toys, which have really struck chords with other people of a certain age who enjoy their nostalgia!
3) What medium do you work with and why?
I work primarily with illustration inks for my colour work, these are used for the base and blocking in all the colours and most of the shades. I combine these with details applied by paintbrush and also coloured pencils. It’s a technique I discovered years ago, and have always returned to as my main way of working. It’s fast, but can render realistic work, yet still retain a painterly, artistic feel.
4) What is your favorite sport to watch and what is your favorite sport to paint? and why? Who is your favorite athlete if anyone? What is your favorite sports team (if any team)?
My favourite sport, despite being English (!) is simply NFL. I have followed it for over thirty years since I was a kid, and still love it to this day. Being such a fan makes painting football easy because I enjoy every aspect of it. My favourite athlete of all time is Joe Montana, and always has been, and is my most favourite athlete to paint. My favourite team is of course San Francisco, again, a team I’ve followed since the mid 1980’s!
5) Who are some of your favorite artists (past or present)?
I have many artists I admire or have been inspired by in my time painting. One of my earliest influences was Chuck Ren, who did many paintings for the NFL back in the day, and who’s style I perhaps admire more than any other, so much so that I tried to emulate that style in my early works, and still do use some of those techniques today. I enjoy the works of many of the classic sports artists, as well as Chuck, such as Merv Corning, Dave Boss and Jim Lamb to name a few. I also love the work of film poster artist Drew Struzan, again, a style that I’ve incorporated elements of in my own work. another huge influence I must add is the hyper-realist painter Dru Blair, who has perhaps helped me develop more than anyone. I learnt more in a four day course with Dru than I had learned in the twenty years previously. I also learned how to better use my chosen tool of today, the airbrush. Someone I’ll always be grateful to!