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Featured Artist of The Week: Barbara Storey

Our featured artist this week is Barbara Storey. Storey is a UK based artist working in mainly oil on board in a figurative style.

"Painting as a hobby is fascinating, involving , but can also be equally frustrating as satisfying. Never having time to take up a structured course, my way of learning is by observing closely the work of all kinds of painters and absorbing the variety of their styles. In fact I visit art galleries habitually, whichever town or country I happen to be in and also here in London. It would be hard for me to pinpoint the painters who made the biggest impression on me, the list being rather long and diverse .I particularly like coming upon the artists, not previously known to me, whose work presents me with new ideas and new challenges. The greatest inspiration comes from my favourite, my only subject: people and their emotions. I like the idea that each person as a portrait subject should be given an individual artistic approach and style. Not everybody would agree, but it suits my passion for exploring and experimenting. It takes a long time to master anything in life and particularly to develop one's own style, but I fully enjoy the journey,however long it might be."

Selected artwork:

Artworks in order:

Patience, nd, oil on canvas, 50cm x 60cm, £350

Again a small series very loosely based on very old b&w photos of the residents of St Kilda. In the 1930s the island was evacuated, the community being tiny and isolated.

The photos were slightly overexposed but of great character, not to mention the actual characters of the inhabitants. I loved the “lived in” clothes, the facial features hardened by work and no doubt harsh weather.

Harlequin’s Circle: Argumentative, nd, oil on board, 47cm x 110cm, £650

I painted a small series based on Comedia dell’arte characters. Initially I was inspired by Cezanne and that was long time ago when I copied one of his paintings on the subject. Only recently I returned to the idea and started with Harlequin and then saw images of Pulcinella. The one enclosed started slightly differently and was based on an internet image, but as I was working on it I have decided to make my character my own and added a peevish expression. The undone shoe and falling sock just followed naturally. I have to say, I had a lot of fun with that.

Sadness, nd, oil on board, 61cm x 61cm, £350

It is a self portrait. I have to admit I paint mainly from the photos due to lack of life models. When it comes to my portraits and there are a lot of them, I usually ask my husband to take a series of photos, giving him some brief instructions as to the pose and mood I aim to achieve. I end up with quite a lot to sift through...

Waiting, nd, oil on board, 61cm x 100cm, £650

Inspiration for this one comes from quite a few sources: Weimar, Otto Dix, Schiele, Durer, old age, fascination with amazing way the flesh folds, I love painting hands and feet!

Napkin Men: Confrontation, nd, oil on board, 38cm x 56cm, £350

The title says it all. I made a small series which I called Napkin Men. The reason being is that the paper tissue was indeed my inspiration. I was at some rather tedious lecture, having a bit of a cold.

And as I was playing with my slightly damp, (sorry!) tissue, twisting the corners - the figure emerged, which reminded me of a very old Chech b&w animation from sixties...

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