About JamesRed Road Flats
My name is James Mackie. I have been drawing and painting for around 20 years as a self-taught artist. I was born in Paisley and raised in the East End of Glasgow and I have lived and worked in Birmingham, Newcastle, Edinburgh and Carlisle. I was a precision engineer by trade and involved in the bar and nightclub industry for the last 20 years. I was looking for a change and an opportunity to incorporate my artwork, to be more creative and to utilise my experience gained within my previous careers.
I felt that the obvious choice was to train as a web and graphic designer. My freelance business has been established for 7 years and specialises in bespoke websites for artists and small businesses.
I mainly use acrylic with canvas and when I have the time, I love to experiment with a variety of surfaces and mediums.
My paintings primarily come from my travels, from the diversity of the architecture to the vibrancy of colours I associate with different cities. I love Barcelona, Joan Miró and Gaudi, the hustle of New York and its buildings and the works of Kandinsky, Basquiat, Klee and Picasso, and their interpretation of colour and shape that inspire so much of my work.
If abstraction is to be defined as an attempt to record a visual reality by reflecting the transient effects of colour and light, then my work begins in the same vain. I work from my own photos and often play around with its computerised images, distorting and re-colouring them until i see something. From there, I try to develop a tangible, textured version on canvas which may involve numerous layers of oil or acrylic paint. I also look through my own visual reality as reference, as well as taking technical direction from the works of some of the great artists; I explore colour, and its effects and capabilities. I initially establish a strong visual foundation from which to begin, then add light and texture, and in doing so creating seemingly abstract compositions of colour and shapes.
My paintings are my diversion from reality. The colours and shapes I use and the way I explore new concepts to develop the innovative techniques that distinguish my work from most other abstract artists.
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