Okay I need to write something in here...I'm Graham, I'm a painter...
Not enough? Okay...So a quick potted history of my life thus far...
Born 1969, Banbury, Oxfordshire, to Mum (Wendy) & Dad (Graham). We moved to Oxford in 1970, living above a toy shop during the week and above my grandparents pub at the weekend...I got lots of toys in faded boxes from the shop and became a bit of a pool shark at the pub.
My Grandfather (Tom) was a keen amateur artist & gave me a small easel one Christmas with a chalk board on one side and a whiteboard on the other. He'd encourage me and help with my drawing in between pulling pints and having the odd bet on the horses, I in turn developed a love for drawing, a taste for beer and thankfully an aversion to gambling.
Aged 5, my brother (Matthew) is born and I begin primary school, we're now living in the village of Eynsham just outside Oxford & I find myself in the class of one Mr Hayes, a lovely man and a wonderful teacher, but also a very talented artist...This is a fabulous stroke of luck for me, as spotting some natural ability he really helps my early artistic endeavours. Mr Hayes, along with my Grandfather taught me all the basics, colour, composition, perspective etc. they gave me a love of 'realistic' painting, from the old masters through to the impressionists. I am forever grateful to them both for all they've done for me.
Secondary school beckons and here I'm lucky enough to find more great art teachers, Mr Mills, Miss Hobbs, Miss Ebanja, all encouraged me to learn core skills while developing my own style. Like many teenagers I'm draw to the work of the surrealists, especially Dali, storytelling becomes a element I increasingly want to include in my work.
After taking my A'levels I reach a crossroads...I'd planned to go on to train as an architect, but 7 years at university seemed like a long time and my grades, while okay, limited the number of courses I could choose from. The obvious choice at this point would have been art school, but they all seemed to be obsessed with 'instillation art'...I wasn't...So I left school, got a job and continued studying art by myself, through books, museums and galleries.
And that's how I've continued to this day, experimenting and learning by myself. Having learnt no 'rules' at art school I've been free to find my own path, make my own art. “Be a first rate version of yourself, not a second rate version of someone else” as someone much cleverer than me once said.
Now when I'm painting, be it a swirling landscape or a romantic figure I'm aiming to produce something beautiful, thought provoking and new, something you've never seen before, a painting that will always be recognisable as having be painted by me...Graham
(22nd June 2011)