Yesterday I posted about how the business name AndyKnillArt came about. Today a bit of background about me, the artist and why you might want to look at my work or possibly meet up or communicate via some online means.
I am Andy, I am 56 and I live in Swanage, Purbeck, Dorset.
I grew up mainly in Kent and enjoyed the countryside near my home on the edge of Chatham and then the coast when my family moved to Broadstairs when I was 10. I would always spend time outside playing or exploring.
Through Scouting and school trips as a teenager I loved exploring in wild places and this linked to my interest in geography and geology. I also walked, cycled, kayak and,rowed…used exercise to experience the places I visited. This is a key part of my background to what I draw today.
As a student at University in Gloucestershire studying geography and geology I drew field sketches and took units on cartography (maps) as part of my studies. I had been persuaded at school that Art and I weren’t a match, I didn’t disagree.
I then went into teaching in secondary schools for 28 years, on reflection after turning to art in 2017 I realised I had drawn thousands or more diagrams to explain ideas to classes. I spent 15 years drawing in chalk and rubbing work off the board so I had space for the next class. Alongside this I continued to enjoy exercise in the countryside, at the coast and in the hills. Occasionally I draw a picture or two but didn’t keep them and didn’t do it on a regular basis.
I left teaching in 2016 after it brought me to Dorset, unfortunately my mental health was unstable and I could not cope with the daily pressures. This had impacted on my work and family (wife and two sons) for over 18 years. I took up keeping sketchbooks on the advice of a fellow teacher also with mental health issues.
So, when I stopped teaching, it wasn’t planned, I just broke one day and decided I needed to stop pushing myself to go back again.
Looking for something to do I focused on my drawing which less than three months after my breakdown saw me start up AndyKnillArt with no clear plan business use or anything else. The key point was to see: Would people buy my art?
So key aspects about me, the artist (a term I found very difficult to use for the first year of the business):
– I love my surroundings of countryside and coastline
– I love to be outside in those surroundings being active
– I think if you enjoy doing art, what anyone else thinks of it doesn’t matter, so I use the philosophy ‘art for fun‘
– I draw in pens because I am no good with brushes
– I love how my art enables me to meet people of many ages and backgrounds who like many of the same things as me and who notice their surroundings
– I draw the things that I like and I try to draw familiar scenes where I live from a different viewpoint if I can find one even if that means drawing on hats and clothing
If any of the above catches your interest and you would like to see some of my art or visit the shop in Swanage when we are allowed to reopen and I am on shift then please make contact.
I want to have an open conversation with people who find my art approachable, I love to share ideas about art, places to visit near me for great views, using art as a therapy for peace of mind. I am self taught, I do not offer classes – I am happy to discuss, share, demonstrate ideas, sit and draw with anyone.
Yes, I like it when my art sells because I take it as a great honour that someone liked my work enough to pay to have a piece of it and I often even do embarrassing sales dances because to me it is still very exciting.
Thanks for reading this.
Easiest contact – email me on firstname.lastname@example.org
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