© 2010 Ryan Humphrey
The images that I paint and draw are characters I develop from found photographs. The photographs often celebrate or commemorate times of past England, leisure, iconography and social history. After I select imagery from different locations and eras, I go about ‘forming’ my own scenario, which is an alchemical and tentative process. I am careful to leave my viewer room to speculate upon their own narrative, this is important to me. I am hoping that I can extrude and expand upon the resource of emotion and information this found photography gives to me. With my painting I intend to filter the content I find, into a whole new sensory experience for my viewer.
I am currently focusing on how found photographs of twee, English settings show people engaging in the sensuality of their location. I pick up on and accentuate the way their expressions show enjoyment associated with sea side ephemera, like ice cream in a cone and donkey rides. The 21st century is far removed from that environment; people usually aspire to go abroad. The presence of sea side’s as a cultural and inspirational place has diminished, as quality of living has improved. With my painting, I use this kind of misplaced nostalgia to create my absurd dreamlike worlds, which exude joy and indulgence in simple pleasures. The drawings I do have a realistic approach where I use hatching to establish tone and texture, the painting style is markedly different, cartoonish, fluid and brightly coloured.