John is entirely self-taught, having worked for most of his adult life as a professional actor. Any formal training during these years was acquired on various courses at London’s City Lit and Morley College. This included a great deal of life drawing, oil painting, watercolour and ceramics.
In 2005, he had a solo exhibition at the Barbican Library, in the City. Called Icons, it consisted of 18 larger than life- size portraits of historical personalities based on contemporary images.
In 2009, John moved from London to Cambridge and since then has participated in Cambridge Open Studios and was accepted as a member of the Cambridge Drawing Society. His work has been accepted by the Pastel Society and the Society of Wildlife Artists, for showing at the Mall Galleries.
I suppose the thing that I strive for most in my painting would be to express an individual point of view. To try to convey to the viewer, clearly, why I chose to paint the picture in the way that I did. A part of this would be a love of strong tonal contrast, the stripping down of the image to a set of simple shapes, perhaps a repetition of those shapes, suggesting pattern, the use of flattened perspective and without losing the representational quality, to push towards abstraction as far as feels appropriate.
With this present body of work, in collage and mixed media, the picture is created in two layers, one imposed on the other. The lower image, of abstract shapes, is created out of newsprint and fragments torn from magazines. The upper image is more representational and painted in acrylic. My aim is to create a dialogue between the layers, the one complementing the other.