Profile of the Week: Anthony Wickens (posted March 26, 2013)

Welcome to Portfolio of the Week! We are delighted to present Anthony Wickens from Bexhill, UK.

Anthony creates realistic pencil drawings and has also been exploring the use of acrylic paints. His main themes are animals, still lifes and people. To see more of Anthony's artwork, visit his gallery: http://community.art-is-fun.com/photo/photo/listForContributor?scre...

When you view his portfolio, be sure to click on the images to view them larger, because there is a lot to admire in each piece.

Please join us for this insightful nterview with Anthony:

How would you describe your art?

I like to think of my art as fine art and try to strive towards photo realism.

How long have you been an artist and how did you become an artist?

I have been drawing for about 5 years due to a bout of depression I found this very relaxing and needed something to pass the time that was enjoyable. I picked up a book from the local library by Lee Hammond and followed it from cover to cover, I have had no formal training and everything I do is through self taught or experimental. I have taken my art seriously for about 2 years, and been painting in acrylics for just over a year.

What is your favorite medium and why?

Doesn't matter how much I try I still prefer drawing and always have some sort of picture on the go, this  works if you don't feel like painting or any other project.

What are some of the challenges in working in your preferred medium?

I spend a lot of time blending and what i call reverse drawing, lifting out with a putty eraser trying to get the lighting right. I try to learn from every picture.

Pick one work of art from your Art Colony portfolio and tell us the story behind it. Why does this piece have meaning to you? What steps did you take to create the piece?

Aside form the painting which I am still at the experimental stage. "The Basket" (shown above). I started this one in April 2011 from an old photo that somebody gave me, at the time I was suffering from depression and had really shaky hands, not wanting to socialize I made this a project. The basket took over a month to complete. If you look at the picture as a clock face, being a lefty I started in the bottom right corner and worked my way round anti-clockwise using a basic HB pencil and noticed as I went I was smudging or as I found out blending as I went. I then went back lifting the highlights and darkening the low-lights with 2B and 4B. By the time I had finished the pups in the center were an awful mess and basically I just lifted them out with the putty eraser and restored their features, needless to say the finished product put a smile back on my face. 

Tell us about one medium, technique or style that you would like to try working with (that you have not tried before) and why you would like to try this.

Still trying to get my head round pastels have tried basics but not completed anything yet and watercolour makes me bad tempered so at some point I will have to try and be patient and attempt something (watch this space)

How do you make time for art?

I'm always up to something, being unemployed I have plenty of time on my hands, doing other things like menial chores are the problem I never seem to have time.

If you could imagine the “perfect art day” for yourself, what would it be like?

I would like to spend a day let loose in a large studio being able to express myself on a very big canvas.

If you could spend 24 hours with one artist, living or historical, who would you want to spend the day with and why? What would the two of you do?

Jack Vetriano, possibly get drunk with him or Canadian artist Jason de Graaf. http://jasondegraaf.blogspot.co.uk/ to hone my skills in photo realism.

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From one animal lover to another, your drawings are wonderful ! I know what you mean about moving on from drawing  to painting. I also find drawing much more relaxing and fun.  My favorite dog is, Who me? I am very familiar  with that expression LOL.Great interview.

I love you dog drawings as well as the painting of the Lab.  The car is very realistic.  Great job!

Congratulations and well done interview Anthony. I think my favorite drawing is the one you call universe. All your dog portraits are beautiful.

Hi Cat thankyou for your kind comments, The Universe is done in acrylic on A4 canvas board I done the three (Slinky, Newtons) as a set called Office Toys to exhibit at my local gallery but was unfortunately rejected not being a member of their arty farty society, they now sit on my living room wall with black mounts in platinum coloured frames.

Cat Demkiw sai:

Congratulations and well done interview Anthony. I think my favorite drawing is the one you call universe. All your dog portraits are beautiful.

Thanx Jean lovely comments.

Jean Robbolino said:

I love you dog drawings as well as the painting of the Lab.  The car is very realistic.  Great job!

Thanx Sharon "Who Me" was done using (frowned upon by the arty fartys) mechanical pencils

sharon oppenheimer said:

From one animal lover to another, your drawings are wonderful ! I know what you mean about moving on from drawing  to painting. I also find drawing much more relaxing and fun.  My favorite dog is, Who me? I am very familiar  with that expression LOL.Great interview.

Hi Anthony. I love your drawings.  I can see you truly love animals.  I understand what you are saying about having depression and drawing helping.  I find it helps me to really focus and my mind is only (well mostly) on the drawing.  Periods of time pass, and when I see the drawing develop it is very satisfying.  Thank you so much for your profile.  I wish you all the best.  Draw what you love and enjoy the process. 

Thank you Pauline for your wonderful comments, good old classical or lounge music really helps me although if the beat gets a bit racey so does my pencil.x.

Pauline Donohoe said:

Hi Anthony. I love your drawings.  I can see you truly love animals.  I understand what you are saying about having depression and drawing helping.  I find it helps me to really focus and my mind is only (well mostly) on the drawing.  Periods of time pass, and when I see the drawing develop it is very satisfying.  Thank you so much for your profile.  I wish you all the best.  Draw what you love and enjoy the process. 

The music sounds like a good idea. I think it helps with focussing and shutting out unwanted thoughts.

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