My path to becoming a portrait artist was an unusual one. As a child my passion was always drawing people and faces – especially faces! At school I excelled at art and was offered a place at art college, but was put off by the growing trend for conceptual art and the prospect of arranging installations, so I embarked on an entirely different path. I went to university to study law, then to law school, followed by a training contract with a city firm of solicitors in London. I qualified as a solicitor in 1991. With the rigorous training and working in London, I had little time to paint, but in 1994 after moving to Nottinghamshire and working for a local law firm, I began to dedicate what spare time I had to painting. After showing some success in portraiture, I began to work part-time, three days painting and four days as a solicitor.
My career as a portrait artist really started in 1999 with a portrait of Harvey McGregor QC. Harvey was head of chambers at 4 Paper Buildings. I frequently instructed his chambers as a solicitor. This portrait led on to other portraits – Lord Woolf, Kenneth Clarke MP, Cherie Booth QC and eventually 34 portraits of prominent members of the legal profession and a solo exhibition of portraits at the Chambers Gallery in London.
I decided to leave the legal profession to become a full time artist and dedicate myself to a career in painting in 2001 and have been painting portraits since then.