Author: Charlie O'Sullivan

Looking around my studio I sometimes wonder how I arrived at this point.... being a full time painter...... a romantic notion in itself !! Well I guess from being a small person the act of drawing was a way of escaping and that still holds true, I just do it now on a larger scale and with a paint brush. However the absolute answer is I just worked hard at something I love to do......often frustrating, nearly always all consuming..... but so satisfying and rewarding when it comes together. Painting is a very solitary activity and my paintings become a conversation with myself. So its no surprise to me that an odd figure, an upside down house, a strange dog or teapot appears in my work......its only a reflection of my thoughts and memories. From shelf stacker to postwoman, student to wife, mother to illustrator, lecturer and I could go on..... I have a wealth of experience, although not all artistic in themselves they all feed and seep into my paintings in one way or another. As well as a personal reflection I find that I also incorporate the narrative of others which I trip over either in person or through the media. I am a proud Scot but I now live and work a mile from the Devon coast at Bigbury, a great place to live. The studio is where I retreat to work...... though it is also somewhere I need to escape from, at times when things just don’t seem to be going the way I intend. So then the beach is where I head to...... walking and talking through my thoughts which tumble in my head not always about work but also about decisions of the day to day, which I need to resolve before I can paint. So living by the coast for the last two years hasn’t turned me into a seascape artist. Rather it has influenced elements, like colour and scale, but most importantly it has given me a place to clear my head and restore my thoughtsf both before and after painting.

My Favourite Tune and Inspirational Text of the Day


Egon Schiele

“The main body of work by painter Egon Schiele (1890 1918), who died at an early age, was produced within barely a decade. His famous nudes unwaver­ingly probed the existential core of human experi­ence. The paintings of Jenny Saville (* 1970 in Cam­bridge) are no less intense in terms of their physicality and confrontational stance. This catalogue brings to­gether the works of these two artists for the first time. Revealed is the stylistic and thematic proximity of the body-landscapes and portraits by the two young stars despite the decades separating their work and their varying use of the brush. The paint­ings and drawings of both artists lend the human body an insistent corporeality, which is rendered in every detail. In Schiele’s self-portraits, usually small-format works, the pose, the accentuated view from below, and gestural style give the images a visual impact equal to the forceful punch of Saville’s giant formats.”