Friday, 7 September 2012

Imogen Skelley (artist)

Boats at sea
Eastbourne artist Imogen Skelley had one of the stalls at the outdoor Art Expo in September. I was attracted to her work as we both share a love of tiny, intricate pictures. She creates abstract and geometric works, as well as subtly coloured land- and sea-scapes

tE: What originally made you want to paint?
IS: I was lucky enough to be brought up in a musical, artistic household full of books and conversation, so it was a natural step for me to follow a creative path. I gained a degree in Fine Art and although I have had many "day jobs", painting has been a constant part of my life.

tE: Working on such a small scale is unusual. Was this a deliberate decision or a natural evolution from previous work?
IS: I learned about ACEOs - Art Cards, Editions and Originals) which are 2.5" x 3.5" in size and collected and swapped by people who like to own little pieces of art and enjoyed working on that scale, leading to experimenting with other similar dimensions. I do like a challenge, and working on a tiny scale (sometimes as small as 1 inch square!) was just that. The work that goes into a tiny painting can sometimes be deceptive!

tE: Being Eastbourne-based appears to significantly influence your choice of subject matter. Do you think you would be the same artist if you lived elsewhere?
IS: I have lived all over the place and certainly the sea and the South Downs has greatly influenced my work in recent years. I have to be honest, though, and say that although I have always loved living on the South Coast, only recently has it really become a direct source of subject matter for my work. I think I would be a less excited artist if I lived elsewhere!

Atmospheric abstract
tE: What direction do you think your work might take in the future?
IS: I can see my paintings becoming more abstract (in the literal sense of the word, with local views as a starting point) and much larger! I am loving working on such a large scale with huge brushes and would like to explore that further. I don't feel the need to pigeonhole myself into one subject matter or style and am happy for the work to lead me in a new direction when the time feels right.

As well as her own gallery website, Imogen has an online Etsy shop and is also on Facebook and Twitter.

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