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Heather Irvine's Profile

About

I am a professional wildlife, equestrian and canine artist working from my base in the south west, UK. My love of art started after first picking up a pencil and attempting to draw horses (the first few being somewhat dubious in quality!) but took on more of a permanent role through my schoolyears, A Level and Fine Art degree, until turning professional in the late 90's. This was on a commission portrait basis initially, showing at Badminton, Burghley and Blenheim Horse Trials, but gradually my own work also started to sell and now hangs across the world.

Trips to Africa in '97 and back again in 2001, resulted in a longterm connection with the glorious light, colour and many difffering beasts the continent has to offer and it was there that my respect of a bright and illuminous pallette began to show in my work. Bold strokes, heat and inensity are how I would best describe what drives my…

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  • Female
  • Joined August 6, 2011

Favorite materials

oils, pastels, oil pastels, charcoal, chalk, paper, canvas, brushes, paints

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About

I am a professional wildlife, equestrian and canine artist working from my base in the south west, UK. My love of art started after first picking up a pencil and attempting to draw horses (the first few being somewhat dubious in quality!) but took on more of a permanent role through my schoolyears, A Level and Fine Art degree, until turning professional in the late 90's. This was on a commission portrait basis initially, showing at Badminton, Burghley and Blenheim Horse Trials, but gradually my own work also started to sell and now hangs across the world.

Trips to Africa in '97 and back again in 2001, resulted in a longterm connection with the glorious light, colour and many difffering beasts the continent has to offer and it was there that my respect of a bright and illuminous pallette began to show in my work. Bold strokes, heat and inensity are how I would best describe what drives my pieces - blocks and layers of colour describing the landscape impressionistically yet true to each individual animals presence - with a hint of drama thrown in. For me, first and foremost, the work is about the joy of painting and I'm not afraid of chucking paint on canvas - the thicker the better! Hopefully this adds to the viewers perception of how it must feel to be in that place at that time from the animals point of view. In 2012 I won the BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year award and spent an incredible 12 days out in Botswana sketching and taking photographs as the prize!

Horses are akin to having a fifth limb for me, I feel I probably know them best out of all the subjects I depict. Graceful, elegant, powerful, emotional - their movement and energy forever surprises me and I am lucky enough to be surrounded by many subjects where I live. My drawings and paintings of them come mainly from my head, very rarely do I copy or refer to a photograph. That way a blank canvas/piece of paper can evolve as I work - what started as a thoroughbred can sometimes mutate into a heavy horse! To coin a phrase 'I go with the flow', whatever happens happens and I think the work remains constantly fresh as a result.

I hope you enjoy having a look through some of my pieces . I am always open to constructive criticism, the public are the best source of response one can have, so please feel free to forward your comments :)

Thanks!
Heather

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