About

I have been painting on canvas and more recently aluminium composite panels for sixteen years and professionally for five. My preferred medium is acrylics as they give my work a crisp, distinctively edged look.  I also use water-mixable oils from time to time.

Realistic paintings depicting subject matter I have experienced directly or photographed is the mainstay of my art.  I get bored easily of the same subject matter and try to vary it up a bit.  Having said that, I return to nature near where I live time and time again feeling disconnected from art, even life in general, if the length of absence is too long.   In the past I used to religiously pursue a kind of photo-realist style, sometimes I still do that, but I’ve tried to go a bit looser more recently.

I’ve lived in a beautiful part of the southern coast of Ireland almost all of my life which influences much of my painting.  I grew up on a tillage and sheep farm, my father was a farmer.  The passing of the seasons and how the worked fields change with them is a recurring theme because of this early experience.  My father was also an early, strong support to me having a go at art.  He died when I was 15.  About a year after his death, the once busy farmyard, now deserted, became the ground zero for practicing art.  I did a few scenes around there, enjoyed doing them and art became a hobby for a number of years.

I studied history and archaeology in university and for a few years practiced commercial archaeology, working on rescue digs in advance of motorway work around Ireland.  All that stopped in late Spring 2008 with the economic downturn.  With no future in archaeology and no desire to pursue advanced studies in it, I returned to painting, devoting myself to it and honing my practice over the following years.

I’ve had seven solo exhibitions so far, six of which in the Grainstore in Ballymaloe, a multi-purpose venue four miles away.  It has given me the opportunity to sell quite a few paintings as well as meeting people from all over the world and getting feedback on my work.  I act as art dealer and curator in setting up my exhibitions and taking sales while attending there almost daily, enjoying this DIY, hands on approach.

I live less than 200 metres from a beach, our house is just one field away.  The beach, due to steady erosion of soft, low, clay cliffs is advancing towards home a little bit every year.  The sea will always be there but the fields around may not be, so I live in a transient landscape long term.

 

Feel free to browse!

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15 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi Niall, just looking through your work and I gotta say it is amazing. I have always loved sketching painting etc. Though I stopped years ago. Lately though I have been trying my hand more and more. I would love to be able to paint like yourself, though I find I have no patience to sit for hours. I like to have what ever I’m doing done within a couple of hours, so I suppose this is my let down. Anyway I have waffled on enough, I just wanted to let you know that your work is really good. If you have any tips you would like to share then do let me know. Chat soon 🙂

    • Hello!
      Thanks for taking the time to look at some of my paintings, I’m new to WordPress so I appreciate all feedback and followers! Ah yes, patience is the key. Like, the painting I’m working on now, I’ve been at it 3 months!

      • Hey no problem they’re great. And I think I really do need to find my patience, we seem to be at loggerheads with each other!! Happy painting 🙂

  2. Hi Naill,
    I’ve been looking at your work for the past while after hearing about you through Tony the vet ( old school mate of yours? Glanmire). Absoloutely amazing! Id love to arrange a meet up at your convenience ( I work abroad during week but am usually back in Cork weekends). My mobile is 0834592704. Happy christmas and hopefully I’ll meet you face to face in the coming weeks ( xmas will be hectic probably).
    Thanks
    Keep up the amazing work
    Ray Corbett

  3. Hello, Niall! I am writing you to ask whether or not you would be against the idea of me using your solar vortex piece for the cover of my album. I am engulfed in it and I feel that it reflects the atmospheric message I am trying to convey with my music.

  4. Hello Niall,
    I only found out about you today, whilst at a workshop in Garryvoe Hotel. And am so pleased, as I also live in East Cork, on the peninsula beside you….Knockadoon. I have seen many of the skies and fields as you have seen them. I paint in watercolour.
    A couple of us started a little Art Group in Ballymacoda 4 years ago, and have just had our 3rd exhibition, we call ourselves the Capel Painters.
    Your work is beautiful, I love it. Do you paint en Plein Air?
    Best wishes,
    Paddy

    • Hey Paddy,
      I paint plein air sometimes mainly in summer. Those oilseed rape fields were all plein air. Where did you have your exhibition? I’m having one, my sixth, in the Grainstore, Ballymaloe at the moment it’ll be there until the end of September, so you’re welcome to it.

  5. Niall, I like your work (well much of it). I like the way you paint anything, the way you see anything as a subject worth the effort to paint. Your talent is very real, your subjects very real. Makes a nice change from much abstractions in art today that need fairy stories to support it. Hope you paint a lichen.

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