As a boy I was forever sketching and exploring the environment of rural Strathalbyn. These early artistic tendencies were held in check with years of teaching and family commitments, until with encouragement and prodding of family and friends, they bubbled uncontrollably to the surface in 1987. My good friend Penny Dowie finally eased me into a first exhibition at Ian Roberts’ Medika Gallery. The early fine pencil sketches of a range of interesting people developed into rich pastels capturing the colour and grandeur of the Flinders Ranges in South Australia, as well as continuing my character studies. While I had zealously protected my self – taught status, a chance meeting with Czech artist, Jan Novotny, led to 7 years of study with him. Jan’s experience and background in painting techniques and colour theory opened my eyes in a different way and gave me an incurable love of oils which have become my prime medium.
I have successfully exhibited in numerous art shows in South Australia. In 1999 the love of art overwhelmed my love of teaching, and I left teaching to work full-time in art from my studio in Victor Harbor. After a successful venture in the 2002 South Australian Living Artist’s Festival, fellow artist, Rod McCallum and I decided to form a small group to promote our art. We invited Rhonda Smith and Glenn Irvine to join us, and “Three Beards and a Bird” was formed. Our inaugural exhibition was held in January 2003. We continued exhibiting together for the next 2 years until one of our members left the district. Visits to Europe in 2003 , New Zealand in 2004/5and Canada 2010 expanded my knowledge and range of subjects, however, a basic love of the sea has led me to focus on trying to develop a unique range of portrayals of the sea. The local islands and southern cliffs of the Fleurieu Peninsula supplying endless material for my paintings
Successful exhibitions at Lombard Gallery and Glenelg Fine Art in Adelaide led to exhibitions in the Coonawarra wine growing region of South Australia, where the first of the “Seascape” series was launched. With high demand for the “Seascape” series I ventured to Melbourne and selling works at Sorrento Fine Art and Flinders Fine Art. These paintings are primarily seascapes. Works are now beginning to find a market in the United Kingdom, U.S.A. and New Zealand.
Exhibited at Art Melbourne 06 and Art Sydney 06. Joint exhibition in September 06 with Margot Tasca at Australian Guild of Realist Artists in Melbourne.
2009 Highly Commended- John Shaw Neilson Art Prize
In subsequent years works have continued to be in demand in both South Australia and Victoria (Mornington Peninsula) with regular sales at art shows and in galleries
In 2014 I donated a major work “Tranquility” 2.5m x 1.5m ($15000) to the Flinders Medical Centre and is part of their permanent collection..
Currently mentoring a young Ethiopian adoptee who shows considerable promise working in oils and passing on the skills handed down from Jan Novotny.
At the same time I am working on commissioned portraits and recreating in oils figure studies I completed many years ago in pencil.