John Connolly

Born in Leeds in 1954, John studied Fine Art at Leeds College of Art before training as a Drama teacher at Doncaster and Derby. Since graduating in 1976, John has enjoyed a successful career in ‘the arts’ dividing his time between, acting and writing and more recently painting. To balance the books, John also teaches Art in Derbyshire. John sometimes describes himself as a ‘Derbyshire based, Cornish artist’ - an expression of frustration at being a landlocked artist whose first love is to paint the sea. He is never reluctant to make a 700 mile round trip to Cornwall or South Wales to sketch and paint in his sketchbooks, further developing the work back in his studio in Derbyshire.

John works mainly with watercolour and acrylics, and often mix media using a variety of found materials, making marks and interesting textures with anything at hand. "I scratch, scrape and sometimes throw the paint onto the canvas to create runs and dribbles that suggest waves or interesting cloud formations. In some of my larger paintings I include collaged materials. Beach sand may be used to create an interesting texture in a landscape or to represent itself with pebbles in a seascape."Dried grass, twigs, leaves and ferns have been known to appear (as themselves) in John’s landscape paintings.

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