A Portrait of local artist, Richard Bennett
Richard Bennett the artist knows what he likes. For Richard, painting is primarily a pleasure and not a medium to exact angst, agony or self-analysis. He talks about his various pictures adorning the walls with affection, humour and a hint of self-deprecation. He is clearly proud of his productions but balances his praise with a hint of criticism; surely the mark of a perfectionist and a man striving to challenge and push his creativity.
Although he is an advocate of painting from photographs, he concedes that having focus in perspective is achievable in painting, though a short-coming in photography. For example, his water colour of the horse and rider (pictured below) was copied from a small photo in the Burghley horse trials magazine; in it he feels he has captured the dramatic depth of the action, as well as the perspective of the rider’s legs.
Painting for Richard is, above all, a hobby: inspired and absorbed, he may transcribe an idea onto canvas in a matter of hours, “starting at the top left hand corner and working down to the bottom right hand corner”, using the minimum of colours – ultra marine, burnt sienna and yellow primrose, and mixing the colours on the canvas rather than on the palette.
The sense of joy and fun is always there. And, not having to cater for the commercial aspect, he feels free to experiment with whatever subject he feels inspired by. The weekly art class he attends – “more a painting club” – not only refines his techniques but galvanises his inspiration, especially if he has recently given away one of his pictures, and has a space on the wall to fill !
See more of Richard Bennett’s work in the Gallery.