Although art was a favourite subject at school which I progressed through to A Level, I have nevertheless managed to spend much of my working life completely ignoring it. After leaving University in Birmingham I began a career in engineering which I have greatly enjoyed, and still do even though I am less hands-on these days.
Around 15 years ago I was persuaded by a fellow engineer to again pick up a water colour brush, and I rediscovered my love for fine art. Perhaps reflecting my technical background, I have never been comfortable with the ‘fast and loose’ approach, and so my watercolours were always detailed, many layered and produced over many ‘sittings’. I gradually moved towards pen and wash, then pen and ink, and finally to graphite pencil which suited my need for a minimum fuss medium which could be fitted around a busy work schedule.
The move into colour pencils over recent years has been something of a revelation. This medium ticks all of the boxes; it is immediate and versatile, providing a rare mix of wonderfully rich colours and soft subtle tones which can be blended and worked on the paper. Moreover, it allows me to indulge my love of fine detail. My first set of pencils was Stabilo Softcolour but sadly these have been discontinued. However, Derwent Coloursoft have proved a worthy replacement, and I also have sets of Caran d’Ache Pablo and Derwent Watercolour pencils. I still have a lot to learn, but I feel that I have now found a medium which I can concentrate on, and one which will stand me in good stead when I retire from engineering in the next year or two.
Dog - A4: Caran d'Ache Pablo plus Derwent Coloursoft
Pebbles - A4: mostly Caran d'Ache Pablo
Dogue de Bordeaux puppy - Caran d'Ache Pablo and Derwent Coloursoft on A4 Cartridge Paper