I paint people interacting with animals, in a colourful style. Usually, my people and animals are situated in an imaginary landscape.
To make a particular painting, I first of all search for an image of a person around whom I will build the story. The person can come from imagination, from random doodling, or from a photo reference.
Next, I choose which size of paper to use. Currently, I work in small to medium sizes for convenience, e.g., under 12 by 16 ins.
After I have placed the drawing of the person on the paper, I find an animal that suits the subject and add it to the design. I try to match people, animal and landscapes so that they belong together naturally. Thus, African subjects will be in a landscape that suggests Africa to me.
All that remains is to decide whether to use wax crayon, acrylics, oils, or some combination of mediums.
Currently, I tend to work in wax crayons (neocolor 1) because I love their intense colours and also because there is no mixing involved, which means I can work quickly to an end result.
I arrived at my current colourful style partially via an admiration of colourful works by Picasso, such as 'Seated woman, 1937' and 'Portrait of Marie Therese Walter, 1937', and partially from my love of colour and portraying animal subjects.
I was born and educated in Scotland, studying primate behaviour. I emigrated to New Zealand, where I became a scientific liaison officer and children's author, writing and illustrating stories for children's magazines, such as School Journal (NZ) and Cricket (USA).
In 1990, I returned to the UK to study the anthropology of art. Then I worked in art and design research, designing toys for babies.
From 2012, I concentrated on developing my personal fine art portfolio.
My paintings have been exhibited in one-person shows in Scotland at Gallery 3, in New Zealand at Manurewa City library, and in group exhibitions in Scotland and England.
Updates are on my blog:-