The K'ai Men Gallery
An open door for an open mind
Steve Neil
What leads me to paint? In painting magic can happen.
My grandfather painted, my mother went to art school, worked in studios in a London fashion house before the war and was a good amateur watercolour painter. I've always painted and drawn but was forced, after art college, to teach. I lasted a year in full-time education and then returned home to my parents to teach supply and to develop my sculpture, which I had studied at college. At the same time it was necessary to earn a living. On 1st January 1976 I bought, with my mothers help, a run down gallery and art shop. I really was on a steep learning curve. I spent the first six months learning more and working harder than ever before. At the end I had learnt the basics of framing, I still do all my own framing.
I had by then married and we had two lovely girls that I painted time and time again. We decided to move to Cornwall so I could paint. "Things happen" as my children say and I am now living on my own and have my children with me every other week. This is probably the ideal for a painter as I can be as selfish and curmudgeonly with my time one week and be brought back into the real world the next. I also have two very stern critics.
In the last two years I have painted full-time with a little restoring for cash flow. I find I am trying to create the atmosphere of where I paint and will reject miles of countryside until somewhere talks to me. A painting is finished when it shows the effects of light, time and weather. I try not to analyse the extra something I can sometimes put in a painting, which is more than the subject. I am finding, almost against my will, that my painting is becoming more abstract. I am always interested to see what will happen when I start a new painting, they don't always behave.

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C O P Y R I G H T K'aimen Gallery 2003. Images and text on this website are protected by individual copyright laws and must not be reproduced, republished or transmitted either in print or electronically. For further information email me here.