One of my favourite places to paint is the Alps, but not just the Alps, more skiing and snowboarding in the Alps. The light, the soft snow, the high peaks, the rhythmic movement of the board and skis on the snow oscillating from side to side, the exileration, the excitement. They all help to lift us from our mundane work lives back in the UK and propel us into excitement, fun and laughter with some much needed exersize. And if that doesn’t work, then there is always the apres ski tipple in the bar to nudge us over the edge.
Since I was 20 I have been a photographer travelling the world, but it wasn’t until I discovered the pull of painting that I really started to capture the atmosphere of the slopes. In a photograph, what you see is what you get. Perspectives, colour, tone and proportion are laid out as the eye would see it and the brain immediately gets it’s fill. There is no need for it to work, it can just see in an instant and it gets an instant gratification. But paintings like a fine wine work differently, slower, deeper and longer. They wisper to you on the palette and gentle infuse into your taste buds as a myriad of complex flavours blending together into pure beauty mixed with an array of tantalizing aromas. The end result, bliss.
I construct the paintings so that they work on your emotions. The colours work hard to bring the dazzling light of the snowy mountains to your eyes. Many of the paintings are semi abstract and in this way your brain can put them together in many ways which makes for an ever changing scene. When your brain puts the image together it hits on some of your experiences you had in the snow. As the brain pulls the image together it triggers these subtle feelings which are linked in the subconscious and brings them back into the conscious for you to experience again. That’s why a painting will always feel better than a photograph because you have to put it together in your head yourself and this triggers all those personal amazing feelings of joy and bliss you last experienced on the piste.
I was honoured to be recently featured on the front cover of the Ski Journal, one of the most exclusive ski magazine in the USA with my ski paintings https://www.theskijournal.com/product/volume-twelve-issue-four/