My brother Matty has drawn for as long as I can remember. While I have trouble making a stick man look plausible, Matty can turn his hand to anything and transform the dullest of objects into something fabulous almost as though by magic!! But of course, it is Matty’s talent that is the magic. One of his favourite themes which I remember him immersed in in recent years was painting rusty old farm machinery. The rustier and more decrepit the better! He has many stories to tell about this time (I think it lasted about three summers in all). As you can imagine, scrapyards attract some interesting characters. Matty also found himself knocking on various farm doors during this time, the farmers were always surprised that Matty didn’t want pastoral scenes but preferred to paint old tractors and broken machinery. It took me a while to persuade Matty that perhaps he might want to turn his attention to painting cute sheep, ours as it happens. Happily he agreed and so the birth of “The Sheep Portraits at Auchenstroan” began.
I asked Matty to jot down a few words about himself by way of introduction which he has kindly provided here, over to you Matty! …
Matty Lamb: Artist
Hello, I’m Matty and I’m an artist. I was born in Buckinghamshire, England but I currently live in Germany. I’ve enjoyed making art for as long as I can remember. I did art A-level at school, completed an Art Foundation course and then in my twenties I graduated with my BA Honours Illustration degree at the Arts Institute at Bournemouth. Throughout my art schooling, I got the opportunity to explore and develop all sorts of creative techniques, including of course drawing and painting.
After working as a designer and illustrator, I got a teacher training qualification and worked for 11 years teaching art in a Further Education college, eventually becoming Course Leader of the Art Foundation. During this time I continued painting for my own pleasure. A highlight was having an oil painting accepted for exhibition at the 2013 Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition in London. At the opening ceremony I even got to meet and chat with my one of my favourite artists, Ken Howard OBE RA.
Throughout my painting career, I have investigated various types of subject matter, mostly falling into the outdoor and landscape category. At times I have ditched the studio altogether, packing my easel, palette, brushes and oils into the car and painting in the great outdoors – en plein air – in all kinds of weather. I’ve painted old buses in a cow shed in Wiltshire and chatted about art with a passing tramp whilst painting a ruined stone building in the Somerset countryside. Once, when painting near a roundabout in an urban area, I even had someone shout obscenities at me from a passing car!
For painting in the (rather more comfortable) studio-setting, I enjoy using either oils or acrylics, as both have their plusses and minuses. For my current series based on the Scottish Auchenstroan flock, I am working indoors from photographs, using high quality acrylic paint on canvas panels. I do aim to incorporate some of the zest from my outdoor work into pieces created into the more comfortable indoor setting! It’s really enjoyable catching the colour tones of the Scottish landscape whilst also capturing the look and feel of those dense woolly coats – quite a challenge for an artist.
You can visit my web site at: www.mattylamb.de