Spotlight on: Liberated painting

Phoebe Hill 30 January 2014

When I am doing a lot of art I see things around me in a different way – as an artwork. For instance, I could be having a conversation with a friend and start thinking how I would paint the light on their cheekbone. What I love about art is that I can be absolutely focused with what I am doing. I paint, draw, dabble with sculpture and now do a bit of set design. Each medium makes me notice different features.

Horses was painted in a few hours during A-Levels. I was flustered about not getting the details right, until my art teacher told me not to be precious about it and paint over. So I did. With a DIY- style paint roller. I then taped every material I used to the end of a long stick before painting, which made me both freer and more careful with the way I worked. I had to stop just copying the photo of horses and ensure that every mark I made caught the stance of the horse on paper.

Other artists are a big source of inspiration. How they produce effects and feelings through art intrigues me, and I try their techniques. Sometimes imitating their style comes naturally, and gives me a real drive. I saw Nathan Ford’s art at the BP Portrait awards and am still painting people like he does. I find term too non-stop to sit still long enough to start noticing things, so I don’t think I could make art here. However, the first thing I did when I got home after last term was to sit down and draw. I can’t see myself ever getting out of the art world – I get too much out of it to miss out.