I began painting as a child as an extension to my keen interest in wildlife and in particular birds. It seemed quite natural, that in the course of studying wildlife of any type, that drawing and painting them, afforded me a greater knowledge and understanding, because in doing so one observes not only their appearance but their behaviour, habitat, and social structure.
Later, as a teenager, my father, a Horologist, began to give me antique clock faces to re-paint. Some of these needed a high degree of accuracy and some were highly decorated in flowers, fruit and birds. I continued to paint these clock faces for many years, teaching me to produce miniatures in great detail.
I began to take commissions, these were generally close observational works of nature, small animals, birds, flowers, etc.
My first job on leaving school was with a Cabinet Maker who would give me the job of drawing three dimensional illustrations of cabinets, cupboards, desks, tables and chairs to prospective clients, most of these were just pen and ink but taught me an enormous amount about perspective. I was also given the job of decorating some furniture with images of flowers and fruit. This job also instilled a great love of all things made for wood, my employer taught me to feel the wood, something I have never forgotten. I have gone on to create many pieces of furniture made from wood, and I am now passionate about medieval timber framed buildings.
Then, I got a job as a commercial artist, working for a Photographic company, drawing and painting local scenes. Here I was taught to use a camera properly and also to be creative in the darkroom. I have never, however, considered a career in photography as I feel it is too prohibitive.
Since then, I have been working in the graphics industry, and have continued to paint and draw, make furniture and build oak framed buildings.
One of my biggest influences has been the work of the Victorian Romantics and the Pre-Raphaelites particularly William Waterhouse and J. E. Milias. Many of my earlier works tried to follow this style of painting, but more recently I have varied my style, working in a looser more impressionistic way. I am now also trying my hand at sculpture and life casting, producing some interesting results.
So I have had no formal tuition in painting and drawing just a constant desire to paint, and in my career I have made the opportunity to incorporate drawing and painting as much as possible.Follow @RolandsArt