Stephen has been involved with visual arts virtually the whole of his life. After graduating with degrees in Visual arts and Education in Newcastle, Stephen spent several years teaching before making the move to being a self employed full time graphic designer. And thats how its been for the past 30+ years.
The last 25 years have been spent in Adelaide primarily as the Creative Director of an Ad and Design Agency that he established with his Director partner (Cate) in North Adelaide some 20 years ago. Very recently Stephen has invested a lot of time in developing his digital artwork that had previously taken a back seat to demanding clients and commercial deadlines.
“It’s nice to spend time developing concepts and images for myself for a change. I like to diversify a bit with works on canvas as well as digital works on paper but for the first time, this year, I’ve really focussed on developing my digital works and building my Living Wallpaper theme which is more playful and has an interesting backstory based on a travel experience I had in New Zealand.
I’m looking forward to expanding the series which has already grown to include some twenty pieces”.
Each of Stephens digital images is produced as a limited edition with intergenerational archival media.
With regard to creative process…
“Each piece is loosely based on the backstory theme and compiled from a diverse range of resources. The most regular resources come from personal texture photographs such as plumbing, wall vents, lamps, power points etc, plus wildlife, landscape and environment shots taken by my son James, as well as stock library resource images (purchased over the last two decades for commercial use by my Ad agency) as well as Public Domain product images and historical photos.
I modify, manipulate and merge these elements in photoshop with manufactured seamless textures and patterns, combined with completely rebuilt objects and creatures such as the marine iguana which I created from 9 different resources adding applied photoshop illustration & texturing. The “thylacine purse” is another example of an item created entirely in Photoshop. Some artworks are as many as 180 layers deep with varying degrease of transparency inclusive of lighting and shadow effects in order to create the final version”
It can be a long time completing a series piece. I often jump from one to another and some remain unresolved for many weeks before Im happy with the final assemblage. Quite a few concepts never make it but are usually saved as future resources."