Amy Jones: Yorkshire Artist.
I received my art education in Surrey before taking an MA in Fine Art at Falmouth College of Art in 2001. At college I started to create oil and watercolour paintings of the town where I grew up, Abergavenny in South Wales. This locality became my main subject for many years. To create a sense of place I began by drawing on location. Once in the studio, I used my drawings and memory to capture the energy and beauty of the Welsh landscape.
I exhibited this work at a number of galleries in London, Wales and the South West. In 1997 I was awarded Third Prize for the Sunday Times / Singer & Friedlander Watercolour Competition and in 1999 I received a Commendation in the Laing Landscape Competition.
Sheep have been the subject of my artwork since I settled in Yorkshire about 10 years ago. I was inspired by a ewe I noticed whilst I was walking around the local area, sketching the landscape. She looked old and craggy and reminded me of the sculpture She-Goat by Pablo Picasso. This gave me the impetus to focus on drawing and painting animals ...particularly sheep.
I find sheep fascinating. I like to draw the ones that show interesting personality traits. I begin my drawings by sketching from life and taking photographs with a digital SLR camera. This allows me to get to know my subjects thoroughly; to observe their mannerisms and behaviour as well as their anatomy. My final drawings look more convincing as a result. Most of the sheep I draw roam foothills of the Pennines. They are very hardy. To me they look almost primeval. I like to elevate their humble status by making portraits of them.