The Course Tutor

Art Painting Holidays

Colin Halliday – Artist Background

I was born in 1964 in Carlisle and raised on a farm on Brackenber Moor near Appleby in the Eden Valley. Art was my best subject at school but it wasn’t until I was 21 when I realised that I could make it into a career.

After doing night classes and spending every moment I could, I was also working at the same time, I learned how to draw and paint what I saw in front of me.

I believed and still believe one has to learn how to look and translate that 3D into 2D so that it looks 3D, “Hope that makes sense!!”

By the time I got to Art college I was already the best draughtsman in the year, however being a Fine Art Foundation, the only one in the country I hasten to add, they weren’t really interested in old school they wanted modern and conceptual, needless to say I didn’t get on very well.

Following this, I went on to do a fine art (BA honours) degree at Exeter. I was able to experiment a lot more during this period; I had a wonderful time. After graduating I returned to Cumbria for two years whereupon I felt I would get sucked into the tourist market and that wasn’t what I wanted. My focus was to mature as a painter not to please people in my artwork style.

At this point, I decided I needed to go back to London and establish myself there and to simultaneously gain some qualifications in order to teach adults. This was 1998 and after two years working part-time and painting I was having shows and selling well; I decided to focus on painting full time in 2000.

My work had been narrative based since 1992 but something happened in the studio one day when I painted a seascape from imagination and I couldn’t take my eyes off it.
I then realised Art doesn’t have to be about meaning and in fact, it was a distraction, it was more important that the application was beautiful.

I have and always will experiment but when I first started back at 21 I had envisaged myself being a landscape painter.
In 2005, after relocating to Derbyshire I was finally able to immerse myself in this particular discipline of art. During this time I continued to show work all across the UK, despite changing styles.

After building a studio and a couple of years painting indoors, I knew I had to start going outside to paint.

Another six years passed while I struggled to find my way within ‘En Plein Air‘, trying many different approaches. Finally in 2012 I had my breakthrough, this lead me to stripping my palette back and painting standing up with large amounts of pure oil paint, something just really clicked, to this day I continue to refine and adjust my working method and application, through this I feel happy in my work.

It has been a very long journey, that being said what I have learned along the way has been invaluable; I can now utilise many styles as a result.

Presently I continue to show across the UK and yet my first joy remains painting and teaching.

Colin Halliday’s Artwork

Here is some featured artwork from Colin Halliday. To view more, go to his artist website here.