Featured Artist Claire McCall

Strongly influenced by impressionist art, self-taught Australian artist Claire McCall paints light-filled images of everyday beach scenes. Visit her website to see more of her work.

 

Beach Day

“Beach Day” Oil, 57cm x 71cm

 

“Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do.” Edgar Degas

The greatest compliment someone can pay me is to genuinely stop in their tracks. They may want to take the time to study the range of values and textures of my paintings. Or they study the drama of abstraction vs realism that is my style. Or perhaps just because it captures their eye and holds their attention. This is when I feel that I have really made an impact on the viewer.

 

Sandcastles

“Sandcastles VI” Oil, 54cm x 95cm

 

It was the exhibition of one artist that flicked the switch for me in my early thirties. I decided then and there, with blissful ignorance, that painting would be my second career path, even though I had never studied art or tried my hand with a paintbrush.

 

Treasure Hunt

“Treasure Hunt” Oil, 57cm x 71cm

 

In fact, throw in some flawless optimism as I thought not of how I might learn to paint, but dreamed of my first solo exhibition. It has been said that “you don’t find art, it finds you.” Well, art found me, just a little later than most.

 

The Lifeguard

“The Lifeguard” Oil, 61cm x 91cm

 

Twelve years on, there have been many painting miles refining my skills with varied and bold brush strokes to give my works visual texture. Originally, I picked up the palette knife to loosen my background painting technique. With a brush in hand, I was often tempted to agonise over the detail.

 

Sandcastles IV

“Sandcastles IV” Oil, 71cm x 91cm

 

I actually love the loss of control that the knife provides. I love the application of oil paint with its buttery texture and beautiful surface shine when not overworked. The result has been a unique signature style, and a greater mastery of “alla prima” painting that gives my impressionist works spontaneity and freshness.

 

Playing In The Shallows II

“Playing In The Shallows II” Oil, 61cm x 107cm

 

My colour palette is very limited, and one that I use consistently. I choose brushes or knives as large as the canvas allows to achieve an expressive feel. The human figure captured in everyday moments is my constant inspiration. Typically, it’s a figure turned away from the viewer in a candid pose. The viewer is invited to complete the story – to fill in the blanks about time, place, thoughts and emotion.

 

Merry-Go-Round

“Merry-Go-Round” Oil, 61cm x 91cm

 

There have been no formal art lessons in my time as a painter, only a few demonstration workshops by a select few “painting heroes” of mine. My greatest teachers have been the artworks of the impressionist masters of yesterday and today.

 

Treasure Hunt II

“Treasure Hunt II” Oil, 76cm x 76cm

 

As a visual learner, the written word has meant very little in my journey, but the images of bold impressionist strokes, rich colour and bright lights have been everything.

 

Rockpools

“Rockpools” Oil, 76cm x 91cm

 

I am a signatory member of the Australian Guild of Realist Artists (AGRA) and have achieved success in a number of exhibitions, notably winning the prestigious Melbourne Clifton’s Art Prize.

 

Beachside II

“Beachside II” Oil, 91cm x 91cm

 

My work is rapidly gaining recognition in Australia. Over the next few years, I will be working on broadening my exposure to international audiences. As for that first solo exhibition, I can proudly inform you that my dream will become a reality later this year (2015).

 

Claire McCall invites you to follow her on Pinterest.

 

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Comments

  1. Your paintings are so alive and make me feel as though I am walking right by and looking in on each moment. I absolutely love your work Claire!

  2. Beautiful style and design…that first piece really caught my attention…just awesome!!

  3. Liz Martyn says:

    Hi Claire,
    I love your work! So alive joyful and dynamic. A strange question, as I know you are self taught, but do you ever teach workshops in oil painting? I would be interested in attending one, and have friends who would also love to do this.
    Best Wishes and keep up the inspiring work,
    Liz Martyn

  4. Hi Liz,

    I appreciate that word dynamic, thank-you!

    In answer to your question, I do not teach at the moment but it’s definitely a possibility for the future!

    Kind regards
    Claire

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