Known for his rain-soaked oil paintings, Jeff combines a romantic 1950s feel with his signature rain motif. The anonymous kissing couple in his artworks represents a feeling of togetherness.
His inspirations include the 1995 Clint Eastwood film, The Bridges of Madison County, which features many rainy scenes. For Jeff, rain symbolises washing away history and starting afresh, marking the start of a new journey. His figures are unidentifiable so viewers can relate to them.
To create his pieces, Jeff takes photographs for reference before sketching the characters in a book. He paints the scene without rain and then adds the couple in before painting on the rain with a dry DIY emulsion brush.
Jeff says: “I’m never happier than when I’ve got a paintbrush in my hand. Over the years, I have started to choose more intense colours to create a focal point – a refuge if you will – from the rain.”
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In his spare time, Jeff absorbs the café culture of Newcastle, watching the anonymous crowds walk past and wondering about their stories. This curiosity shines through in his work, and harks back to his time on a market stall, where he'd meet interesting characters and uncover more about their past.
His varied career also includes stints as an accident investigator and at an oil rig, where he was known as the ‘toilet artist’ due to his penchant for sketching caricatures of workmates on the toilet walls!
Jeff has enlisted the help of two of his close friends to create realistic scenes. After the pair pose in the signature 50s clothing in his studio or a local park, Jeff takes several photographs of them before using these for reference when sketching. He adds: "I use my instinct when selecting colours. The couple represent togetherness and the beginning of a story."
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