Alice Tennant

My painting is as much about colour and texture as it is about form. The starting point of a picture is just that- a moment when anything is possible. Even if I begin with a specific idea of what I want to achieve, the painting begins to take shape and grow, almost as if it has a life of its own. All I have to do is listen, and watch, carefully, to see where it wants to go, who it’s going to be. Just like children, my paintings take time, attention and care to establish themselves. Some are a pleasure to bring into being, where as others are more wayward and demanding. At the end of the process, I hope I have created something that others will enjoy, as much as I have enjoyed making it.

I began to draw and paint as a youngster, encouraged by an inspirational teacher at secondary school. I planned to go to art school, before life events over took that ambition. However, after selling my first work at the age of eighteen I decided to pursue my interest in painting and although untrained, I have made my living from my work ever since.

I grew up on a farm in north Pembrokeshire. The landscape, the sea, plants and flowers have all informed my work. It is a county of constantly changing weather patterns and light. There is a special quality to a land that is surrounded on three sides by the sea. The rugged weather worn hills, cliffs and beaches are a constant source of inspiration, as are the small ports and harbours that dot the coast. Walking provides the best way to view the landscape and I never tire of rambling across the Preseli hills, or striking out along the wonderful coast path. I will often take the impressions from these walks as a starting point for a picture, making sketches, notes on colour and atmosphere to use as a basis for a painting that I work on in my studio. My garden provides a different source of interest for my paintings, the chance to study a growing plant in detail and freely indulge my love of colour.

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