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Meet the artist: Giles Ward

Hi Giles, great to speak with you. Where are you based at the moment? 

My studio is a converted room at home. It used to be my sons’ playroom. Being an artist is playing anyway – so it seems apt!

Ah that does seem apt! So, how did you become an artist?  

I have drawn, painted and messed with making things from a very young age. I did study at art college, but I’ve only just got back into oil painting over the last couple of years.

Wow, we can't believe you've only been back into oil painting for a couple of years! Which mediums or subjects do you prefer?  

I use everything and anything! At the moment I’m enjoying using oils. They are so malleable and textural. I love experimenting with effects so I’ll use acrylics as a base, oils to layer up and then throw anything in that I think will give the image what it needs. That could be model paint, varnishes, inks, pen, spray paint, charcoal – anything that’s to hand.

That sounds like a really enjoyable way of creating. How would you describe your work?  

Experimental, textural, playful.

Where do you get your inspiration from?  

At the moment - as you can see from the work published by Whistlefish - my inspiration is in the wonderful textures and colours of fish and shellfish. I don’t seem to be able to leave the sea alone at the moment!

We understand that completely, the sea never leaves our minds here at Whistlefish! How would you describe your home?  

We live just outside Exeter in a true West Country cottage. It’s very rural and natural.

Ah that sounds amazing, we love a West Country cottage. Where's your favourite spot down here in Cornwall?  

I love to visit Cornwall. It has a wonderfully inspiring landscape – the contrast of sea and land, interspersed by dots of towns and villages. Every scene is different and, thanks to the weather, every day is too. It’s a place of amazing colours.

Where are your favourite places to travel? 

Anywhere in Devon and Cornwall, of course. My childhood holidays from Yorkshire were in North Devon. That seaside magic never wanes.

It really doesn't, we could spend all our time by the sea! What’s your most ‘pinch me’ moment so far? 

Anytime I’m with my most incredible family. Ah!

Ah that's lovely to hear. What’s next for you?

More painting. Then some writing. Then some sculpture. I find ‘creating’ to be incredibly therapeutic. I am a great believer in the power of creativity for well-being. I work with a charity called Magic Carpet, Arts for Health, who are all about empowering individuals through the creative arts. Please look them up, they are fantastic: https://www.magiccarpet-arts.co.uk/

That sounds like such a worthwhile cause, we will definitely check them out. Thanks for your time Giles, we can't wait to see what you create next!