Clive Gould – Artist Interview
As the world is on lockdown, we thought this would be a good opportunity to get some inside info on how our artists work, below is an interview with Gallery artist – Clive Gould.
Firstly here is a little background on Clive –
Shortly after studying graphic design at Cardiff College of Art,
Clive Gould commenced a successful career, over 25 years, with BBC Wales, leading to his final position as Head of Graphic Design.
In 1995 he realised his dream of becoming a full time professional artist.
Since this time his paintings have predominantly been inspired by his long-held passion for the sea and the magical elements of the coastline.
Clive’s preferred medium is acrylic and his work is highly realistic,
verging on photo realism. His distinctive large format paintings are executed with outstanding technical skill and graphically portray the rugged drama and stunning beauty of the Pembrokeshire coast.
Clive’s work is very much a poetic reminder of the beauty of Pembrokeshire
and portrays the power and precision of realism in the hands of a skilled artist. His paintings transcend photographically yet also offer a vivid and faithful reproduction of the area’s most dazzling inter plays of seascape, weather and light.
Here is the interview;
Firstly how is the lockdown affecting your work?
So frustrated as I cannot get to any beaches now, especially with the fine weather and great atmospheric light. Certainly missing the salty air of the coast.
· Where do you get most of your inspiration?
Quite simply by being on a beach. I particularly enjoy exploring beaches at differing tide times and weather conditions armed with my camera. My aim is to capture dynamic reference material from rugged cliffs, the dynamic sculptured shapes of rocks and pebbles, crashing waves, to perhaps the serenity and calmness of a small floating boat in a harbour.
· Do you have a favourite painting that you have done? If so which one?
I would say it is a large painting I produced some years ago titled ‘Feather on the Rocks’. I was particularly pleased with the composition, how the formation of the pebbles and rocks invited one to carefully walk over them to the solitude and immense beauty of the beach at Marloes Sands. It was sold, if you remember, through your gallery to a couple who lived in London. It was most gratifying, when I received an email from them expressing how pleased they were with the painting – and how it reminded them everyday of the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast.
Clive actually gave me the hard task of choosing my favourite painting of his! I have many, the above being one of them purely for the great reaction we always had to it in the Gallery ( Can you spot the feather?),
but recently Clive has been working on a series of wave paintings which have all been fantastic. A particular favourite has to be a commission that Clive has recently done for one of our customers – Its a very large painting of breaking waves, he has captured the colour and light beautifully and it really puts you there!
· Do you prefer to work outside/in your studio/a mixture of both?
I work mostly from my studio, as I produce large format paintings, which are time consuming to create, as my style of painting is highly detailed and sometimes verging on photorealism. I am also free to make a mess!
· Where/ or what is your favourite place/subject to paint?
As a seascape artist, my favourite beach is Marloes sands for its vast expanse of golden sands, rugged cliffs and at times, incredible huge breaking waves crashing against rocks. I have visited this beach on numerous occasions and it never fails to continually provide me with exceptional visible reference material and wonderful memories that has assisted me with the creation of my paintings.
· How do you find titles for your paintings, does the idea come before or after?
I always decide the title for a painting when it is finally completed. Having painted over the years so many coastal related subjects, it has become increasingly difficult for me to devise a title that I have not used before. I now rely on my partner Sue to come up with new original titles and I must admit she is really good at this!
· Who’s your favourite artist/artists?
I have always admired the work of the late John Knapp Fisher. The egg tempera artist Ceri Auckland Davies for his stunning portrayal and luminance in his paintings of the Pembrokeshire coast.
Contemporary Scottish painter Charles Simpson for his highly atmospheric coast and landscape paintings. And not forgetting the late Sir Kyffin Williams, the master of his incredible palette knife paintings, a technique that I failed miserably to practice!
· Which is the favourite piece of art by another Artist that you own?
If I had the choice of owning a piece of work by any artist, it would have to be Sir Kyffin Williams.
· Do you listen to music while you paint? If so what kind of music?
Most of the time I like to work with peace and quiet, otherwise I will listen to Radio 2.
· What could you not do without in your studio?
As I personally frame all of my paintings, my professional framing equipment of a Morso machine, underpinner and an extremely large bench play an essential part in my studio.
· What does your studio space look like?
My studio is a large stone built outbuilding on a farm surrounded by beautiful countryside – it is boiling during the summer and extremely cold in the winter!
· How do you feel your work has changed over the years?
I now prefer to work on a larger scale and my paintings have become more precise and detailed.
· What other work have you done apart from being an Artist?
My main professional career was Head of Graphic Design for BBC Wales. Besides painting I have created realistic wall sculptures based on pebbles and rocks which I exhibited at the World Trade Centre in Dubai
· What is the best thing about being an artist for you?
Of being able to utilize my artistic ability and craft skills that I have acquired over the years to create paintings that the viewer with enjoyment and appreciation of my work.
· Did you always know you wanted to be an artist?
I can remember as a child my mum asking me what I wanted to do when I grow up I – I replied an artist with a beard and floppy hat!
· What sort of painting are you working on at the moment?
I am currently shifting through all of my vast photographic reference material and planning to produce a series of small paintings – something which will be totally different for me as I have always worked to a large format
· What is your favourite medium to work in and why?
Acrylic has always been my preferred medium for a number of reasons. Primarily it suits my style of painting. It is a much simpler and cleaner process than painting with oils, that often requires various solvents and a long time to dry. Acrylics can quickly be cleaned up with water. It has a very fast drying time, so you can rapidly build up layer on top of layer of paint. By incorporating a medium – an additive that thins or thickens your material – acrylics can take on qualities of other paints, such as oils or watercolours etc. It also has the important benefit of very quickly being able to apply and build up layers of transparent glazes.